BOSTON (WWLP) – The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) announced a billboard design contest open to all students currently enrolled in colleges and universities in Massachusetts.

The design contest is to support the American Traffic Safety Services Association‘s (ATSSA) National Work Zone Awareness Week. The main design criterion that is asked of applicants is to create a Public Service Announcement (PSA) that encourages drivers to obey the rules of the road while also exercising caution when traveling through work zones.

“We hope this contest will raise awareness about steps drivers are required to take when they approach and travel through work zones on the highway,” said Transportation Secretary and CEO, Gina Fiandaca.  “Injuries and deaths on our roads are preventable if drivers obey traffic laws, including laws around moving over for road crews and traveling at lower speeds in work zones.  We want everyone traveling and everyone working on our highways to get home safe at the end of the day and that means drivers must obey speeds for work zones, must driver sober and hands free and should wear seat belts at all times.”

This year’s theme for National Work Zone Awareness Week is, “You play a role in work zone safety. Work with us.”


“Work zone safety awareness is an important message for MassDOT. Every year work zone safety crashes lead to unnecessary deaths on our roadways as well as traffic and project delays.” said Highway Administrator, Jonathan Gulliver. “We are excited to see the creative content and informational PSA’s which will be submitted to help us communicate work zone safety on Massachusetts’ roadways”

According to MassDOT, the top 3 designs will be displayed on a series of digital billboards along highways in Massachusetts throughout the 2023 construction season.

  • The submission selected for first place will be displayed on billboards for approximately three months.
  • The submission selected for second place will be displayed on billboards for approximately two months.
  • The submission selected for third place will be displayed on billboards for approximately one month.

The submission deadline is Friday, April 21 at 5 p.m. The winning designs will be selected based on creativity, impact, and relevance to this year’s identified theme according to MassDOT.

A panel of MassDOT senior managers will select the winning entries based on the following criteria:

  • Visual appeal
  • Adherence to the theme
  • Quality of design
  • Ease of reproduction

The winners will be notified via email and announced during the 2023 MassDOT Transportation Innovation Conference which is scheduled to be held on Tuesday, May 2, and on Wednesday, May 3.  In addition, entries will be posted on the website and communicated through MassDOT social media accounts, according to MassDOT.