Times Square billboards deemed too big by feds

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Times Square Billboards Deemed Too Big By Feds

The giant, iconic signs of New York City's Times Square have recently come under federal scrutiny.

According to Polly Trottenberg, commissioner of the city's Department of Transportation, federal officials are pressuring her department to either get rid of most of the billboards or risk losing funding.

A 2012 federal law designated numerous roads, including the ones that run throughTimes Square, to be part of the National Highway System since they are key connectors into the network.

All those roads fall under federal guidelines including the 1965 Highway Beautification Act which limits the size of signage within 660 feet to a maximum of 1,200 square feet.

Most of the oversized billboards in Times Square do not meet this requirement.

The penalty for non-compliance is 10 percent of the federal highway money given to states, which, in this case, totals around $90 million.

Commissioner Trottenberg has vowed to keep all the signs citing their iconic status and benefits to tourism and the economy.

The department is currently in talks with various agencies to determine a solution.

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