September 2, 2014

Digital billboards are signs of the times

| 12/14/2011
Some 217 digital billboards now dot Florida roadways, and the number is growing. While industry representatives say they'll never displace traditional billboards completely, the digital signs are an "important part of the future" for billboard companies, says Joe Little, chairman of the Florida Outdoor Advertising Association and also vice president of real estate in the southeast region for CBS Outdoor.

Getting to that future, however, involves dealing with local governments and, often, opposition from local citizens groups. The community organizations tend to object to digital billboards on traditional grounds — they're unsightly, they say. And the groups also argue that digital signs create a greater visual distraction for drivers than traditional billboards.

So far, the industry has crafted a mostly successful strategy to gain acceptance by emphasizing the benefits of digital billboards — positioning them, for example, as elements in community alert systems that can be used to help find fugitives, track down missing children or warn of severe weather.

Billboard companies have also struck various deals with cities. Miami, for example, collects between $4 million and $6 million annually from billboard companies paying to put signs on city-owned property.

More about Florida's digital billboards

Digital Access

DIRECT DIGITAL ACCESS
Add digital to your current subscription, purchase a single ditgital issue, or start a new subscription to Florida Trend.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
An overview of the features and articles in this month's issue of Florida Trend.

ACCESS THIS ISSUE »

Florida Business News

Florida Trend Video Pick

Disney's Hoop-Dee-Doo still serving up laughs, dinner after 40 years
Disney's Hoop-Dee-Doo still serving up laughs, dinner after 40 years

The Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue will mark its 40th anniversary this week after more than 37,000 dinner-show performances at Pioneer Hall, tucked away in Disney's Fort Wilderness campground.

Earlier Videos | Viewpoints@FloridaTrend

Ballot Box

When will you retire?

  • Soon - within a year
  • 2-3 years from now
  • 4-6 years from now
  • 6-10 years from now
  • 10+ years from now
  • I can't envision retiring
  • Already retired!

See Results

Ballot Box
Subscribe