A decade after Senator Thomas Libous pushed for mileage-based exit signs along New York's interstate highways, the changeover isn't planned for the Southern Tier.

Libous for years had backed legislation to require highway exits to be numbered to reflect the distance traveled. The measure was first introduced in the state Senate in 2007.

The late senator, who for a time chaired the Senate's transportation committee, believed New York should use the same numbering system utilized by most other states.

The New York State Department of Transportation Thursday said "there are no plans" to extend the mileage-based exit numbering system to Interstates 81, 86 and 88.

Under a mile-based system, Exit 5 on I-81 South would become "Exit 14." (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)
Under a mile-based system, Exit 5 on I-81 South would become "Exit 14." (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)

Lance MacMillan, the agency's Poughkeepsie regional director, this month announced that mile-based exit numbers will be installed on Interstate 84.

The new I-84 exit numbers will reflect the mileage from the Pennsylvania state line to an interchange.

The installation of new sign panels and the removal of the old panels on Interstate 84 is expected to start in the spring.

State officials won't say when mileage-based signs might be considered in the Binghamton region.

According to the DOT website, "although the change is technically possible, it would be quite costly" and would compete with other projects for "scarce resources."

The agency indicated it likely would not make the move statewide until it is required by the Federal Highway Administration or unless money could be found to pay for the change.

Pennsylvania adopted the mileage-based exit numbering system for its Turnpike and interstate highways in 2001.

Contact WNBF News reporter Bob Joseph: bob@wnbf.com

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