Chapter 5515: STATE HIGHWAYS - USE; OBSTRUCTION

5515.01 Permits granted to use or occupy portion of road or highway.

The director of transportation may upon formal application being made to the director, grant a permit to any individual, firm, or corporation to use or occupy such portion of a road or highway on the state highway system as will not incommode the traveling public. Such permits, when granted, shall be upon the following conditions:

(A) The director may issue a permit to any individual, firm, or corporation for any use of a road or highway on the state highway system that is consistent with applicable federal law or federal regulations.

(B) Such location shall be changed as prescribed by the director when the director deems such change necessary for the convenience of the traveling public, or in connection with or contemplation of the construction, reconstruction, improvement, relocating, maintenance, or repair of such road or highway.

(C) The placing of objects or things shall be at a grade and in accordance with such plans, specifications, or both, as shall be first approved by the director.

(D) The road or highway in all respects shall be fully restored to its former condition of usefulness and at the expense of such individual, firm, or corporation.

(E) Such individual, firm, or corporation shall maintain all objects and things in a proper manner, promptly repair all damages resulting to such road or highway on account thereof, and in event of failure to so repair such road or highway to pay to the state all costs and expenses that may be expended by the director in repairing any damage.

(F) Such other conditions as may seem reasonable to the director, but no condition shall be prescribed that imposes the payment of a money consideration for the privilege granted. Nothing in this division prohibits the director from requiring payment of money consideration for a lease, easement, license, or other interest in a transportation facility under control of the department of transportation.

(G) Permits may be revoked by the director at any time for a noncompliance with the conditions imposed.

(H) As a condition precedent to the issuance of any permit for telecommunications facilities or carbon capture and storage pipelines, the director shall require the applicant to provide proof it is party to a lease, easement, or license for the construction, placement, or operation of such facility or pipeline in or on a transportation facility.

Except as otherwise provided in this section and section 5501.311 of the Revised Code, Chapters 5501., 5503., 5511., 5513., 5515., 5516., 5517., 5519., 5521., 5523., 5525., 5527., 5528., 5529., 5531., 5533., and 5535. of the Revised Code do not prohibit telephone and electric light and power companies from constructing, maintaining, and using telephone or electric light and power lines along and upon such roads or highways under section4933.14 or other sections of the Revised Code, or to affect existing rights of any such companies, or to require such companies to obtain a permit from the director, except with respect to the location of poles, wires, conduits, and other equipment comprising lines on or beneath the surface of such road or highways.

This section does not prohibit steam or electric railroad companies from constructing tracks across such roads or highways, nor authorize the director to grant permission to any company owning, operating, controlling, or managing a steam railroad or interurban railway in this state to build a new line of railroad, or to change or alter the location of existing tracks across any road or highway on the state highway system at grade. No such company shall change the elevation of any of its tracks across such road or highway except in accordance with plans and specifications first approved by the director.

This section does not relieve any individual, firm, or corporation from the obligation of satisfying any claim or demand of an owner of lands abutting on such road or highway on the state highway system on account of placing in such road or highway a burden in addition to public travel.

Cite as R.C. § 5515.01

Amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.43, SB 162, §1, eff. 9/13/2010.

Amended by 128th General Assemblych.43, HB 2, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2009.

Effective Date: 09-29-1999

5515.02 Removal of structures constituting obstructions or interferences.

All individuals, firms, and corporations using or occupying any part of a road or highway on the state highway system with telegraph or telephone lines, steam, electrical, or industrial railways, oil, gas, water, or other pipes, mains, conduits, or any object or structure, other than by virtue of a franchise or permit granted and in force, shall remove from the bounds of the road or highway, their poles and wires connected therewith, and any tracks, switches, spurs, or oil, gas, water, or other pipes, mains, conduits, or other objects or structures, when in the opinion of the director of transportation they constitute obstructions, or they interfere or may interfere with the contemplated construction, reconstruction, improvement, maintenance, repair, or use by the traveling public of the roads or highways.

All individuals, firms, or corporations so occupying any road or highway on the state highway system, under and by virtue of a franchise or permit granted and in force, shall relocate their properties and all parts thereof within the bounds of the road or highway when in the opinion of the director they constitute obstructions, or they interfere with or may interfere with the contemplated construction, reconstruction, improvement, maintenance, repair, or use of the road or highway. The relocation within the bounds of the road or highway shall be in the manner and to the extent prescribed by the director.

If, in the opinion of the director, such individuals, firms, or corporations have obstructed any road or highway on the state highway system, or if any of their properties are so located that they do or may interfere with the contemplated construction, reconstruction, improvement, maintenance, repair, or use of the road or highway, the director shall notify such individual, firm, or corporation directing the removal of the obstruction or properties, or the relocation of the properties. If the individual, firm, or corporation does not within five days from the service of the notice proceed to remove or relocate the obstruction or properties and complete the removal or relocation within a reasonable time, the director may remove or relocate the same by employing the necessary labor, tools, and equipment. Any notice required under this section shall be made by personal service, certified mail, or express mail.

If, in the director's opinion, the obstruction or properties present an immediate and serious threat to the safety of the traveling public, the director may remove or relocate the obstruction or properties without prior notice.

When the director performs a removal or relocation under this section, the costs and expenses shall be paid by the director out of any appropriation of the department of transportation available for the establishment, construction, reconstruction, improvement, maintenance, or repair of highways, and the amount thereof shall be certified to the attorney general for collection by civil action.

As used in this section, "road" or "highway" has the same meaning as in section 5501.01 of the Revised Code and also includes any part of the right of way.

Cite as R.C. § 5515.02

Effective Date: 04-05-2001

5515.03 Occupants of land to remove all obstructions.

Occupants of land situated along the roads and highways of the state highway system shall remove all obstructions within the bounds of such roads and highways which have been placed there either by themselves or their agents, or with their consent, and not under a franchise or permit legally granted. By obtaining the consent and approval of the director of transportation, obstructions placed within the bounds of such roads or highways prior to January 2, 1928 may be permitted to remain upon the conditions prescribed in section 5515.01 of the Revised Code.

No individual, firm, or corporation shall place or maintain any post, sign, or obstruction within the bounds of any road or highway on the state highway system without first obtaining the consent and approval of the director.

Cite as R.C. § 5515.03

Effective Date: 09-28-1973

5515.04 Attaching guideposts or signs to utility poles.

Utility poles along the public highway may be used for the purpose of attaching thereto or placing thereon, signposts, guideposts, warning signs, or other signs when prescribed by the director of transportation or county engineer.

Cite as R.C. § 5515.04

Effective Date: 04-05-2001

5515.05 Grant of franchise to street or interurban railways.

No franchise or grant to any street, interurban, or other railway shall be granted by the director of transportation, board of county commissioners, or by the council of any municipal corporation, unless such franchise or grant provides that the company shall, when required by the proper authorities in charge of such road or street, make such changes in its grade and method of construction as are necessary to conform to any improvement made on such street or road. The type of construction used by the company shall be approved in the first instance:

(A) By the director, if such road is under jurisdiction of the state;

(B) By the engineer of a municipal corporation if such improvement is within the bounds of such municipal corporation;

(C) By the county engineer in the case of other roads, and shall also be approved by the proper authorities having jurisdiction over such street or road.

Cite as R.C. § 5515.05

Effective Date: 09-28-1973

5515.06 Procedure to remove buildings or other obstructions near railroad crossings.

If the director of transportation or board of county commissioners deems it necessary, at or near railroad crossings, to remove buildings or other obstructions near such crossings, they shall, by resolution, declare it necessary to appropriate such buildings or other obstructions and the ground upon which they are located, if deemed advisable, and cause notice of the passage of such resolution to be served upon owners of the property sought to be appropriated. If such owners are nonresidents, the director or board shall cause notice of such resolution to be given by one publication in some newspaper of general circulation in the county in which the property sought to be appropriated is located, and, if the address of such owners is known to the county auditor, he shall cause a copy of such notice to be mailed to them. Within ten days after service of the resolution or publication of notice, such owners shall file with the director or board their claims for compensation and damages. The director or board shall make allowances of compensation and damages to owners who have filed claims therefor, and, without the filing of such claims, shall make allowances of compensation and damages to such owners as are under disability. If such owners are not satisfied with the allowances made, they may appeal to the probate court as provided in sections 5563.01 to 5563.19 of the Revised Code.

Cite as R.C. § 5515.06

Effective Date: 09-28-1973

5515.07 Use and control of rest areas - commercial activities prohibited.

(A) The director of transportation, in accordance with Chapter 119. of the Revised Code, shall adopt rules consistent with the safety of the traveling public and consistent with the national policy to govern the use and control of rest areas within the limits of the right-of-way of interstate highways and other state highways and in other areas within the limits of the right-of-way of interstate highways.

(B) Except as provided in division (C) of this section or as otherwise authorized by applicable federal law or federal regulations, no person shall engage in selling or offering for sale or exhibiting for purposes of sale, goods, products, merchandise, or services within the bounds of rest areas within the limits of the right-of-way of interstate highways and other state highways, or in other areas within the limits of the right-of-way of interstate highways, unless the director issues a permit in accordance with section 5515.01 of the Revised Code. Notwithstanding any rules adopted by the director to the contrary or any other policy changes proposed by the director, each district deputy director of the department of transportation shall continue to implement any program allowing organizations to dispense free coffee or similar items after obtaining a permit that operated within the district prior to January 1, 1997. Each district deputy director shall operate such program within the district in the same manner as the program was operated prior to that date.

(C) In accordance with rules adopted under division (A) of this section, the director may cause vending machines to be placed within each rest area that is able to accommodate the machines. The vending machines shall dispense food, drink, and other appropriate articles.

(D) This section does not apply to the sale of goods, products, merchandise, or services required for the emergency repair of motor vehicles or emergency medical treatment, or to the department of transportation as provided in section 5515.08 of the Revised Code.

Cite as R.C. § 5515.07

Amended by 128th General Assemblych.43, HB 2, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2009.

Effective Date: 09-26-2003

5515.08 Sale of commercial advertising space within a roadside rest area.

(A) The department of transportation may contract to sell commercial advertising space within or on the outside surfaces of any building located within a roadside rest area under its jurisdiction in exchange for cash payment. Money the department receives under this section shall be deposited in the state treasury to the credit of the highway operating fund.

(B) Advertising placed under this section shall comply with all of the following:

(1) It shall not be libelous or obscene and shall not promote any illegal product or service.

(2) It shall not promote illegal discrimination on the basis of the race, religion, national origin, handicap, age, or ancestry of any person.

(3) It shall not support or oppose any candidate for political office or any political cause, issue, or organization.

(4) It shall comply with any controlling federal or state regulations or restrictions.

(5) To the extent physically and technically practical, it shall state that the advertisement is a paid commercial advertisement and that the state does not endorse the product or service promoted by the advertisement or make any representation about the accuracy of the advertisement or the quality or performance of the product or service promoted by the advertisement.

(6) It shall conform to all applicable rules adopted by the director of transportation under division (E) of this section.

(C) Contracts entered into under this section shall be awarded only to the qualified bidder who submits the highest responsive bid or according to uniformly applied rate classes.

(D) No person, except an advertiser alleging a breach of contract or the improper awarding of a contract, has a cause of action against the state with respect to any contract or advertising authorized by this section. Under no circumstances is the state liable for consequential or noneconomic damages with respect to any contract or advertising authorized under this section.

(E) The director, in accordance with Chapter 119. of the Revised Code, shall adopt rules to implement this section. The rules shall be consistent with the policy of protecting the safety of the traveling public and consistent with the national policy governing the use and control of such roadside rest areas. The rules shall regulate the awarding of contracts and may regulate the content, display, and other aspects of the commercial advertising authorized by this section.

Cite as R.C. § 5515.08

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 25, HB 59, §101.01, eff. 9/29/2013.

Effective Date: 09-26-2003

5515.21 to 5515.24 [Repealed].

Cite as R.C. § 5515.21 to 5515.24

Effective Date: 06-28-1961

5515.99 Penalty.

Whoever violates section 5515.07 of the Revised Code or any rule or regulation adopted pursuant to such section shall be fined not more than one hundred dollars for a first offense; for a subsequent offense such person shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars.

Cite as R.C. § 5515.99

Effective Date: 09-20-1963