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About the Scenic Byways Program

Nominating a route as a State Scenic Byway

This page is intended to help potential byway sponsors through the state designation or de-designation process.

The first step for anyone who has a route in mind is to contact ADOT&PF and discuss your ideas with the Scenic Byways Coordinator and get information about the process.

Who may file an application

Applications can be filed at any time of the year by any public organization, private non-profit agency, community group or individual within Alaska, however the evaluation process will begin each year in June.

Preparing the Alaska Scenic Byways Designation Application

photo Northern Richardson Highway Scenic Byway Dedication & Ribbon Cutting at Fort Greely, March 17, 2005. Former Deputy Commissioner John MacKinnon, Carl Ekstrom, Former Lt. Governor Loren Leman, LTC Cornelius and Andrew Niemiec.

The following summarizes the information needed for the state byway designation application. Additional pages may be attached to the original application where needed.

Applicant Information:
Tell about yourself and the group you represent. This will serve as the Department's point of contact information for the byway sponsor.

Proposed Byway Information:
In this section you will suggest a name for the byway and describe the route that the byway will follow.

Statement of Significance:
Using the list of intrinsic qualities provided in the application, describe which of those qualities apply to the proposed byway and explain why this route deserves designation. The byway may possess one or more of the relevant intrinsic qualities, but it is recommended that you only focus on the one or two that are most applicable to the route. All byways are different and should showcase their unique resources. Interest lies in defining the qualities along the route that make it special.

Byways sponsors should have the support of the local governments that have jurisdiction over the byway. Provide a list of names of the officials that were contacted and how they were informed. Please attach any resolutions or other documentation concerning the local jurisdiction's position on the designation.

Community Participation:
This is similar to the "Jurisdiction" section. It is crucial to have the support of important local community organizations that are involved in or affected by the designation. List those organizations and when and how there were contacted in this section.

Corridor Management Issues:
In this section, you should document potential problems or opportunities which you see for this route and identify any preliminary goals and objectives for the route. The sponsors should note what they hope to achieve and what issues they may face in meeting those goals.

Sponsors will need to provide several attachments to complete the application.

  • Map of Corridor Boundary: A map should be included that clearly indicates the route and corridor of the proposed byway. To help ADOT&PF's evaluation, please mark any existing facilities and points of interest along the route, and index them for reference.
  • Letters and/or Resolutions of Support: To help ADOT&PF judge the level of support in the area, letters or resolutions of support by the local governing body(ies) in the area must be submitted with the application.

You are also encouraged to submit letters of support by businesses, service organizations, agencies and other local groups. Examples organizations that you might want to solicit support for the byway include Chambers of Commerce, Convention and Visitor Bureaus, federal agencies that manage resources in the area, community clubs and interest groups, and private citizens.

  • Six Media Ready Photos: It is important to have good quality images that illustrate the intrinsic qualities and possible experiences along the proposed byway. You are required to submit at least six non-returnable digital images or slides. Digital images should be in the JPEG format and be high resolution with at least 2048 pixels on one dimension, typically a 3.2 mega pixel camera set for high resolution. If the byway designation is approved these photos will be used on the Alaska cenic Byways web site and other printed promotional literature.

All images must be accompanied by a statement that the image is in the public domain or that the copyright holder has granted permission to use the photo to promote the byway upon designation.

Click here for more information on taking media-ready photographs.

  • Other Materials: Additional materials that can be submitted to help ADOT&PF judge the qualities of the route include brochures or videos of points of interest along the route.

Submission and review of the application

A decision on the application by the Commissioner of Transportation & Public Facilities can be expected approximately 60 days after the Byways Coordinator has determined that the application package is complete. The following is an outline of what happens after you file the application:

photoVisioning Session for the Glenn Highway National Scenic Byway, 2004
  • Public notice of the pending application for byway designation and a 14-day comment period will be posted on the Alaska Scenic Byways web site, the Alaska Online Public Notices web site and in a newspaper of general circulation.
  • After public comments have been received an interagency committee will meet to evaluate the application and develop a recommendation for the Commissioner of Transportation and Public Facilities.
  • A recommendation is forwarded to the Commissioner of Transportation and Public Facilities for action.

Additional resources for download:


For assistance with the application or general information, feel free to contact the Scenic Byways Coordinator for assistance.