The Alabama Scenic Byways Program Manual
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The Alabama Scenic Byway Program identifies three sequential phases for development of Scenic Byways: Eligibility, Designation and Implementation. It is anticipated that each phase will be completed prior to initiation of the next.
It is anticipated that the Byway process will begin at the local level through development of a Corridor Advocacy Group (CAG). Taking a corridor through the Scenic Byway Eligibility, Designation and Implementation Phases is a significant work effort. Without strong support at the local level, it is unlikely that this effort will be completed successfully. The Corridor Advocacy Group will be the driving force behind this effort and officially recognized as the controlling body for the Byway. A formal structure should be provided for the Corridor Advocacy Group. The efforts of the Corridor Advocacy Group will determine the difference between successful and unsuccessful Byways. The Corridor Advocacy Group, as a minimum, must include the following individuals:
- a representative from the appropriate regional planning commission
- an elected official from each jurisdiction traversed by the Byway
- a representative from each local planning agency traversed by the Byway (if applicable).
Membership in the Corridor Advocacy Group will evolve as the Byway matures and new opportunities and challenges are identified and addressed. Carrying a corridor through the Alabama Scenic Byway Program is a challenging task and the Corridor Advocacy Group must consist of individuals committed to the success of the Byway who are willing to work hard for the Byway designation.
The three phases of the Alabama Scenic Byway Program are briefly described below. Additional detailed information is and a detailed flow chart of the process is available if requested.
Eligibility – The Eligibility Phase determines whether or not a proposed Byway meets Alabama Scenic Byway standards. It is not enough that intrinsic resources merely exist along a corridor, they must be exceptional, significant and distinctive to the point that these resources are a destination unto themselves. Included in this phase is identification and mapping of intrinsic resources as well as initial development of a corridor story for marketing purposes.
This phase provides adequate information so that the Alabama Scenic Byways Advisory Council can determine whether or not a corridor meets Program standards and should be moved forward to the Designation Phase. Proposed Byways will be reviewed with respect to connectivity and recommendations made to address such potential for connection.
Designation – The Designation Phase centers on development of a Corridor Management Plan (CMP). This phase of the Byway development process focuses on developing an Action Plan for protecting, enhancing and managing the resources identified in the Eligibility Phase for both present and future conditions.
At the conclusion of this phase the Alabama Scenic Byway Advisory Council determines whether or not the Corridor Management Plan provides adequate protection of intrinsic resources; identifies a sustainable Action Plan; and, documents broad based community support for the Byway. If the Byway meets these standards and others, it is recommended for implementation.
Implementation – The Implementation Phase begins the physical and policy implementation of the Scenic Byway. It takes the actions identified in the Designation Phase and initiates protection and enhancement of the Byway intrinsic resources. At the initiation of this phase the Byway is physically recognized with the installation of Alabama Scenic Byway signage.
The Implementation Phase does not end with posting signage, developing an Action Plan or even constructing enhancements along the Byway. It is a continuous process that includes implementation of actions identified in the Corridor Management Plan, as well as annual updates to the Corridor Management Plan to reflect changing conditions along the Byway.