When dial-up internet was still a novelty in 1996, the goal was to get state agencies to notify the Federal DOT of any scenic highways or scenic roads in their cities and counties. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) DOT launched an initiative to compile data on scenic byways and roads across the country. Someone might ask how could it be possible to gather all the information to think that the Internet was still a ‘dream’ during those times. Well, the Rand Mcnally map proved to be indispensable while driving around, and that was the easy part. Getting to isolated areas in southern Utah and Colorado state where there is little to no civilization, much let alone the Internet, was a challenging yet exciting experience.
Apart from absorbing data, working on the architecture, and the web development process, another responsibility was to encourage state agency personnel to manually fill out forms and register for the new Scenic Byways website.
Escalante, Utah, was one of the most distant locations we visited. The scorching sun and sparsely populated desert plains were not something one encountered frequently. The hours spent waiting for internet access while we drank cold beverages to cool off were a haven. A truly magnificent location that no camera can do credit to.
The most convenient mode of exploration for the majority of us is by automobile – simply hop in your car or truck and hit the road. You don’t even need a map – simply enter your destination into your GPS and receive step-by-step directions to your desired location.
However, automobiles are not the only mode of transportation on the roads. Nothing beats the sensation of touring by motorcycle if you prefer the wind in your hair and a closer connection to the streets. Bikers have an unmatched opportunity to experience the splendor of our country.
Able to look back on all those moments fill us with pleasure in knowing that we were a part of something special. The DOT’s remarkable attempt to support the project was genuinely visionary. Today, the state funds the project, which is now known as https://www.byways.org/, one of the most visited websites for every visitor who wants to discover scenic routes and plan their excursions throughout the country.
Without a doubt, the Scenic Byway Program establishes best practices for livability and sustainability and identifies innovative and creative ways to support scenic byway renovations that entice numerous tourists from across the world or the state to stay longer and spend more time in our communities.
Today, the website features various scenic byways and routes. You can even download a free map of scenic byways to assist you in planning your journey. Our recent family vacation through the Colorado Rockies, along the green river, and into the Canyonlands of Utah brought back memories of our exploration of landscapes and areas of such grandeur and magnificence that one must visit to truly appreciate. Thanks to the Department of Transportation, this journey is possible!