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State Highway Administration

Community Improvement


The State Highway Administration's Adopt-A-Highway Program provides a way for community groups to show their state pride and help keep the Free State litter free. Keeping our roadways free from litter and debris improves the health of our environment. It enhances the experience of driving in Maryland - for both residents and visitors. Since the Adopt-A-Highway Program started in 1989, SHA has partnered with more than 120,000 Marylanders who have cleaned and enhanced over 15,000 miles of roadside.

How the program works


Adopt-a-Highway Small businesses and other SHA approved organizations may participate in this program. Recognition of tourist related facilities is acceptable. Groups agree to adopt a one-mile stretch of highway to clean it at least four times a year. At least one member of the group must be 18 years old or older. Children 12-17 years old are allowed to participate with adult supervision. For safety reasons, children under the age of 12 are not allowed to participate in litter pick-up events. SHA will provide your group with training, safety vests, trash bags and tips on how to pick up trash and recyclables. We will also place signs recognizing your organization at both ends of the adopted roadside. Please note: businesses recognizing alcohol, smoking products, recreational drugs, and pornographic messages will not be permitted. Advocating, promoting, or advancing a cause such as social issues, group action, activism, political agendas or opinion, or non-family friendly messages is not permissible under any circumstances.

Getting started


The Adopt-A-Highway Coordinator in your county will guide you through the process, identify a stretch of highway to adopt, and provide you with safety training materials as well as supplies. Click here for a list of local Adopt-A-Highway Offices. Once an adoptable road is agreed upon, you will receive a Group Adopt-A-Highway application. SHA maintains non-tolled numbered routes in Maryland’s counties. Please contact your local public works agency if you wish to adopt a road that is not maintained by SHA.

Litter Awareness Program


Litter Critters As an additional public service, SHA offers support for litter awareness events at schools and civic events. The program can provide materials including coloring books, brochures, speakers and visits from our Litter Critter characters. Please contact the Adopt-a-Highway Coordinator in your district for further information and scheduling.

Please contact us at:

Beverly A. Goetz, Program Manager
Maryland State Highway Office of Maintenance
7491 Connelley Drive
Hanover, MD 21076

Phone: 1-877-624-6863 (toll free) and 410-582-5557

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