In 1959 the Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas sign was constructed exactly 4.5 miles (7.2 km) outside of the city limits. The sign is today about 0.4 miles (0.64 km) south of the southernmost entrance to Mandalay Bay (the southernmost casino).
Since its creation in 1959, access to the sign was very limited — the median’s curbs (along with the lack of close parking) made it challenging to stand right next to one of city’s oldest symbols. The result? People either jaywalked, or risked parking in one of the Las Vegas travel lanes.
But scurrying across the street and dodging speeding cars is now a thing of the past. You and your group can now pose by the sign and snap away with ease. The iconic “Welcome to Las Vegas” sign features a 12-car parking lot, which is designed to improve pedestrian safety and even provide access for the disabled. There is also enough space to park two buses.
Located on the Las Vegas Strip just south of Russell Road, the sign famously reads, “Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas, Nevada” on the front and “Drive Carefully” and “Come Back Soon” on the back. The sign was designed by Betty Willis while she worked for Western Neon Company and cost $4,000 to build and install. Willis also designed the iconic signs for the Moulin Rouge hotel.
It’s original creation was inspired by her father, Las Vegas pioneer S.R. Whitehead, Clark County’s first tax assessor, who died 18 years before the sign went up.
On May 1, 2009, the “Welcome to Las Vegas” sign was added to the National Register of Historic Places.