Most Recent Articles

Scenic America launches ViewFinders visual environmental education program

Scenic America is proud to announce the launch of ViewFinders, the first and only educational program aimed at teaching youth how to critically examine the visual environment. First developed by the Dunn Foundation, ViewFinders is designed to help citizens look at their communities in a new light. “Simply asking a question like ‘do I like…

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Sen. Lamar Alexander receives Scenic America’s Stafford Award

Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee received Scenic America’s highest honor, the Stafford Award, during its recent meeting of affiliates and Board of Directors in Washington, D.C. Senator Alexander’s selection recognizes his longtime, outspoken support for America’s scenic and natural landscapes. An early advocate of sustainable tourism, Senator Alexander has sponsored legislation to protect scenic wilderness,…

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Mark Mayer: wrangling with the wild west of billboard regulation

By Makenna Sievertson, Scenic America intern After Mark Mayer graduated from the University of Michigan in 1978 with a degree in mathematics, the Detroit native wanted to move west to sunnier climes. Enticed by the seemingly never ending beauty of the deserts and mountains, he settled in Tucson, Arizona in 1984. Mayer first became involved…

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Hilton Head Island project puts overhead power lines underground

One of the most inspiring and forward-looking municipal improvement projects in the country is currently underway in the Town of Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, where crews are more than halfway through a 15-year project to put overhead power lines underground.  The effort is the result of a 2004 Town ordinance requiring the conversion of…

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After latest flap, state takes control of Philadelphia’s outdoor advertising

Shortly after the Philadelphia City Council signed off on plans for giant digital advertising displays on downtown city streets, Pennsylvania’s Department of Transportation has revoked the city’s right to control outdoor advertising in commercial areas. Many large cities in the United States have certification from their state Departments of Transportation to control outdoor advertising in…

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Governor Chafee receives Stafford Award for beautification program

Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee has received Scenic America’s Stafford Award for his leadership in establishing a highway beautification program aimed at improving the visual appearance of the state’s roadways.  The award was presented during a recent reception in Newport hosted by the group’s chairman, Ronald Lee Fleming.  An award for excellence in transportation leadership…

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Oceanside City Council votes down digital billboards

Another southern California city has rejected a proposal to allow digital billboards on public property.   Scenic advocates and local residents persuaded the Oceanside City Council to vote down a first-ever digital billboard in the city.  The billboard would have gone up on public property on busy California State Route 78.  The victory for the…

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Reception marks 25 years of National Scenic Byways Program

More than 100 supporters of scenic byways gathered at the Capitol Visitor Center in Washington on December 6 to honor the 25th anniversary of the passage of transportation legislation that created the National Scenic Byway Program. Scenic America co-hosted the reception with the National Scenic Byway Foundation and the Journey Through Hallowed Ground (JTHG) Scenic…

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Scenic America gives Long View awards for Newport gateway project

Scenic America recently presented its “Taking the Long View” award to two civil servants for their roles in helping to beautify a key gateway from the Pell Bridge into the city of Newport, Rhode Island. Scott Wheeler, the city’s Tree Warden, and Eric Offenberg, Director of Engineering at the Rhode Island Bridge and Turnpike Authority…

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Expert says gateways, community character are key drivers of tourism

A new article in Virginia Town & City Magazine says that communities looking to attract responsible, sustainable tourism should focus on their character and authenticity, and that the appearance of the gateways leading into those communities is just as important. Edward T. McMahon, senior resident fellow at the Urban Land Institute and former president of Scenic America, said:…

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