Illinois Historic Route 66

Parks & Recreation, Experiential Environments, Case Studies

Location: Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway
Design: Schmeeckle Reserve Interpreters
Frames and Supports: Best Exhibits

The Illinois Route 66 project, funded by the Illinois Bureau of Tourism, the Illinois Department of Transportation, and a Federal Highway Administration grant, features three phases. The first phase, which was completed in May of 2008, focused on developing an interpretive master plan, incorporating multiple access points and hundreds of attractions from Chicago to St. Louis.

The second phase, completed in September of 2010, featured interpretive wayside panels with a design as unique as the route itself. Graphic panels, shaped in a streamlined design, were affixed to simulated chrome supports, designed to resemble features of 1950s automobiles. The frame and supports feature curved legs, shiny simulated chrome etched racing stripes, prominent Route 66 shield logos, and a tactile chevron inspired by cars of that era.

Schmeeckle Reserve chose to partner with iZone to produce the high-quality durable Custom High Pressure Laminate (CHPL) panels that would be an integral part of telling the story of Route 66 for years to come. “We chose iZone because we’ve had great success with them in the past,” says Ron Zimmerman, director, Schmeeckle Reserve. “iZone has been very receptive to special orders and making needed changes, and has had a great response to our clients’ concerns,” he says.