Arkansas Scenic Byway Program was established shortly after Congress passed the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991. This federal legislation created the framework to develop a network of National Scenic Byways, and All American Roads. The Act also encouraged each state to develop its own state scenic byway program.
The Arkansas Highway Commission adopted criteria by which routes in Arkansas could be designated as Arkansas Scenic Byways. The purpose of this program is to facilitate Arkansans’ recognition of special routes within the state.
Arkansas Scenic Byway Designation Criteria
An active organization composed of various private and governmental groups,
businesses, and agencies interested in preservation, enhancement, marketing, and
development of the route's scenic, cultural, recreational, and historic
qualities must be established. This
partners organization makes a request to the Arkansas State Highway and
Transportation Department to designate a route, or series of routes, as an
Arkansas Scenic Byway.
The route must first be designated as a "scenic highway" by the State General
The route's corridor must contain abundant scenic, cultural, recreational,
and/or historic qualities that would be of interest to tourists. Segmentation of
the route will be considered if development patterns exist which may detract
from the overall character of the byway.
The Arkansas State Highway and
Transportation Department will conduct a study to determine the route’s
qualifications as a scenic byway. The
study should include local jurisdictions’ position on byway designation and
segmentation. The study will be
conducted in cooperation with the Department of Parks and Tourism.
If the study demonstrates the route qualifies, the Arkansas State Highway and
Transportation Department will submit it to the Arkansas Scenic Resources
Preservation Coordinating Committee for consideration.
After Arkansas Scenic Resources Preservation Coordinating Committee approval, a
public meeting will be held to solicit public input regarding byway designation
and to answer any questions that may arise.
The Highway Commission may adopt the route
and designate it as an official scenic byway with appropriate identification on
State Highway Maps and distinctive scenic byways logos and signing. At this point it is the responsibility of the
partners organization to promote and market the scenic byway to enhance its
ability to attract visitors.
For more information about the
Arkansas Scenic Byway Program you can contact the Arkansas State Highway
and Transportation Department at (501)-569-2207 or by e-mail at: