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Aesthetic Design Guidelines
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A retaining wall in Pomeroy, Ohio, depicts images in the concrete that represent the Ohio River town.

ODOT’s Aesthetic Design Initiative was created to improve the aesthetic appearance or “visual appeal” of our transportation facilities. The citizens of Ohio deserve an aesthetically pleasing transportation system, as well as one that is safe, efficient, and cost effective. Considering safety, operational efficiency, cost, environmental impacts, and aesthetics is the foundation that ODOT uses in decision-making on every project.

The use of aesthetic treatments can make a project’s appearance more attractive and compatible with local surroundings, often at little additional cost. The guidelines in this manual are intended to provide direction, education, and support to all who contribute to Ohio’s transportation system. These contributors include ODOT employees, consultants, contractors, elected officials, Local Public Agencies (LPA’s), and the public. The goals of this manual are as follows:

  • Describe how aesthetic design is incorporated into ODOT projects throughout the PDP.
  • Provide guidance on aesthetic design principles and applications.
  • Establish consistency with other ODOT manuals and guidance documents.

The Guidelines

Download the following PDFs:

ODOT Aesthetic Design Guidelines

Aesthetics Process at ODOT

The Related Forms

Download the related forms in Word:

Aesthetic Strategy Checklist

Aesthetic Funding Assessment Form

Aesthetic Design Checklist