Pictured is one of the new state welcome signs.

Courtesy | ODOT

Drivers entering Ohio will soon be welcomed with signs bearing the state’s new branding and slogan, “Ohio, the heart of it all.” The signs will replace older and outdated signs at major entry points to the state.

Gov. Mike DeWine and the Ohio Department of Development announced the reimagined brand on May 10 during Ohio Tourism Day. The tagline was previously the state’s tourism slogan from 1984-2001.

“There is endless fun, excitement, joy, and adventure here in Ohio, but our state is more than just a travel destination,” said DeWine. “There is no better place to live, learn, work, and play, and now, everyone who crosses into Ohio will know that they’re entering the heart of it all.”

In total, 36 new signs were made by the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) sign shop in Columbus, which manufactures nearly 100,000 signs each year.

“Each letter, each element is put on by hand by our employees, piece by piece, letter by letter,” said ODOT sign shop administrator Joshua Wilson.

Some of the new welcome signs will be installed by ODOT crews, while contractors will install others. The largest signs, measuring more than 40 feet wide, will be hung on the arch that spans I-70 at the Indiana border in Preble County.

“These signs act as a welcome mat, inviting visitors in and greeting residents coming home,” said State Tourism Director Sarah Wickham. “We want them to be beautiful and to represent our state’s pride, setting the tone for what you can expect during your time in our great state.”

Visitor spending hit $53 billion in Ohio last year, a 13% increase over 2021. The state recorded 233 million visits in 2022, including 47 million overnight stays.

The total cost of the signs is $59,990, and the goal is to have them all installed by December.

Submitted by the Ohio Department of Transportation.