INDOT's Hoosier Beautification Initiative

INDOT’s Hoosier Beautification initiative consists of four programs, all designed to beautify Indiana by reducing roadside trash, promoting highway cleanliness, improving the environment, and creating welcoming gateways.

The four programs are:  

  • Adopt-a-Highway – This traditional program coordinates with community groups that provide trash and litter pickup on two-mile segments of non-interstate Hoosier highways. INDOT will place a sign on the portion of highway these groups adopt.
  • Sponsor-a-Highway – This program is similarly structured to the Adopt-a-Highway program but is specifically for trash and litter pickup on one-mile segments of Hoosier interstates (and some high-speed highways not covered under Adopt-a-Highway). Rather than by community groups, the trash is picked up by a vendor hired by the groups.
  • Hoosier Gateways – We will help facilitate individuals or groups interested in beautifying entrances to communities, cloverleaf or other interchanges, medians, roundabouts, or small segments of roadway by connecting them with proper community officials.
  • Trash Bash! – This is a one-weekend clean-up that takes place annually each spring, when INDOT, Adopt-a-Highway groups and other interested organizations, join together for a dedicated effort to collect hundreds of tons of trash in time for the summer driving season. 

To discover which program best fits the needs of you or your organization, read the detailed information below.

Adopt-a-Highway Program

INDOT’s Adopt-a-Highway program helps significantly reduce the roadside trash problem on Indiana’s highways.

The program coordinates with community groups that provide trash and litter pickup on two-mile segments of non-interstate Hoosier highways.

INDOT area coordinators supply safety training, vests, road work signs, and trash bags to help get the job done. Local community organizations provide the manpower. In return, INDOT will place a recognition panel sign on the portion of highway adopted by the community groups.

If you are a member of an organization seeking volunteering opportunities, look into the Adopt-a-Highway program. Cleaner state roads and U.S. routes in your area will significantly improve the aesthetics and morale of your community.

Qualifications

Groups are asked to clean their designated two-mile area four times each year, including once in the early spring and in late fall.

Support from INDOT

INDOT’s Adopt-a-Highway coordinators supply safety training, safety vests, work signs and trash bags during pickups. All your group has to donate is time.

Recognition

In addition to the signs erected with your group’s name, individuals gain a sense of accomplishment by improving the environment.

How to Adopt-a-Highway

Adopt-a-Highway coordinators are located in INDOT district or subdistrict offices. Call INDOT customer service (855-463-6848) in order to be put in touch with the appropriate coordinator. Or, submit an electronic request; in the bottom field of the form, indicate the city, county and/or specific two-mile stretch of non-interstate INDOT highway you are interested in adopting. Interested parties should watch the Adopt-a-Highway Safety Briefing.

Sponsor-a-Highway

INDOT’s Sponsor-a-Highway program helps significantly reduce the roadside trash problem on Indiana’s interstates and select high-speed highways not covered under the Adopt-a-Highway program.

The program coordinates with individuals or community groups, who hire a private, INDOT-approved litter-control company that performs litter control in the name of the individuals or groups on one-mile segments of Hoosier interstates or select high-speed highways.

In return for individuals or groups hiring a vendor, INDOT will place a recognition panel sign at the beginning of the interstate or high-speed highway segment sponsored as acknowledgement.

If you are a member of an organization seeking opportunities to beautify areas near your place of business or within your community, look into the Sponsor-a-Highway program. Cleaner interstates and high-speed highways in your area will significantly improve the aesthetics and morale of those who drive in your area. Cleaner roadsides have been shown to actually decrease the frequency of littering.

Qualifications

Groups will hire litter-control vendors to clean each one-mile segment at least 12 times per year. In areas where there is a grassy median as part of the segment, the area included extends from the edge of pavement to the middle of the median in both directions of travel. If the median has a concrete barrier wall, it is not included.

Support from INDOT

INDOT will issue district-wide permits for the litter-control vendors to pick up trash along the one-mile segment.

Recognition

INDOT will erect recognition signs with your group’s name.

How to Sponsor-a-Highway

For additional help, interested parties may contact INDOT customer service (855-463-6848) in order to be put in touch with the appropriate coordinator. Or, submit an electronic request; in the bottom field of the form, indicate the city, county and/or specific one-mile stretch of interstate or high-speed INDOT highway you are interested in sponsoring.

Hoosier Gateways Program

This program is administered by cities, towns and communities in Indiana. However, INDOT will help facilitate individuals or groups interested in the program by connecting them with proper community officials.

Hoosier Gateways is a program that enables individuals or groups to help beautify entrances to communities, cloverleaf or other interchanges, areas near exit ramps, roundabouts, or small segments of roadway. In the future, there is the possibility of also including bridge underpasses and grassy highway medians.

Beautification efforts include, but are not limited to:  litter cleanup, lawn care and landscaping, art or motif installation, and aesthetically pleasing signage that promotes clean, welcoming and scenic areas on or near roadways, including community entryways or gateways.

Qualifications

This is not an INDOT-sponsored program; contact officials in your town, city or community and urge them to contact INDOT with design ideas. Please note that INDOT will require a maintenance agreement. Designs that include art, signage and landscaping should be easily maintained, durable and, most importantly, inviting to all.

Also, note that areas near exit ramps from interstate and highways may be considered for the Hoosier Gateways program; in the future, there is also the possibility of including underpasses and grassy medians.

Support from INDOT

If you are unable to contact the correct official in your town, city or community, INDOT will help you contact the source.

Recognition

Cities, towns and communities may include recognition signs to acknowledge the beautification efforts, providing they meet the criteria.

How to Become Involved in Hoosier Gateways

Contact officials in your town, city or community. If unsuccessful in your efforts, call INDOT customer service (855-463-6848). Or, submit an electronic request; in the bottom field of the form, indicate the city, county and/or specific area you are interested in beautifying.

Trash Bash!

For more than a dozen years, INDOT workers, Adopt-a-Highway volunteers and Department of Correction crews have joined forces to spring clean Indiana interstates during Trash Bash! Beginning in 2018, this effort takes place over the course of one weekend.

In 2018, Trash Bash! will take place April 13-15.

During the first day, INDOT maintenance staff across the state will take a day away from their everyday tasks of maintaining the roads, bridges and roadsides to focus on litter collection.

Understanding that not everyone can take time away from school and work on the first day (a weekday), INDOT is hopeful that individuals, organizations and businesses will consider joining maintenance staff in this monumental effort to clean up our state on any of the three days.

How Trash Bash! Works

As with the Adopt-a-Highway groups, interested parties may come to any INDOT location and be briefed on roadside safety, borrow safety vests and be provided with bags. INDOT simply asks that you return the vests. Participants in Trash Bash! may either:

  • Report the amount of litter collected and/or recycled
  • Leave the bagged litter in a neat pile(s) safely along the roadside and contact your local INDOT facility with exact location(s) so maintenance staff may collect the bags

Whether if its one-quarter mile or 10 miles, INDOT welcomes your assistance in this statewide effort. Because of safety concerns, INDOT staff will focus on roads with high traffic volume, such as interstates and divided highways, with hopes that the public can focus on the lower traffic volume two-lane roads.

Motorists should always be on the lookout for clean-up crews along Indiana highways. When drivers encounter a work crew, they should slow down and be alert for changing traffic patterns.

If you or your group is interested in volunteering, please call INDOT customer service (855-463-6848) in order to be put in touch with the appropriate coordinator. Or, submit an electronic request; in the bottom field of the form, indicate the city, county and/or specific stretch of lower-traffic, two-lane INDOT roadway you are interested in cleaning.