The state has announced that, in an effort to help defray some of the costs of rest areas and Welcome Centers, they are selling sponsorships to private companies.
Vendors are now being sought by the state to sponsor, and advertise at, Michigan's 64 rest areas and 14 Welcome Centers.

The idea, according to Bill Wahl of the Michigan Department of Transportation, is to provide some new services, while also partially funding operations at the centers and rest areas.

Similar efforts have been successful in other states, according to Wahl.
Under federal rules, the advertising is not allowed to be seen from the roadway, but it can be displayed inside the rest area.

The state is hoping the winning bidder will be able to provide things like electronic kiosks providing information for travelers, along with Wi-Fi access for motorists at the Welcome Centers.

Litter pick-up and groundskeeping would also be part of the contract.
The pact however will not include any food from vending machines, as that service is already handled exclusively by the Michigan Bureau of Services for Blind PersonsBusiness Enterprise Program.