Las Vegas Sign Achieves Historic Status

The ever famous neon sign welcoming visitors to "Fabulous" Las Vegas, Nevada — perhaps the most famous Googie sign in the world — has just been accepted into the National Register of Historic Places.

The landmark sign, which has stood at the far south end of the Strip since 1959, is one of very few things in Vegas that hasn't changed in the past five decades. It was designed by graphic artist and Las Vegas native Betty Whitehead Willis, who also designed the city's Blue Angel Motel and Moulin Rouge Hotel signs.

The sign was inducted into the register on May 1, but the official announcement was made yesterday by Clark County officials, who also revealed the new plaque marking its designation.

The sign, which over the years has become a hot photo opportunity for tourists, was made safer in December of last year for visitors wishing to get their picture taken next to it. The city renovated the median on which it stands and added a 12-space parking lot. Before, visitors were forced to park in the street and run across traffic to get to the sign.

The new lot cost $400,000 to install. The sign, when it was constructed in 1959, cost $4,000.

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