National Scenic Byway
On October 16th, 2009 the U.S. Secretary of Transportation designated the 180-mile long route of US Route 15, US Route 15 Business, and Virginia Routes 20, 231, 22, and 53 as the Journey Through Hallowed Ground National Scenic Byway. This is one of the highest designations the Secretary can bestow upon a public road and is a tribute to the local communities from Gettysburg, PA to Monticello in Virginia. The Journey Through Hallowed Ground National Scenic Byway is the primary touring route from which visitors can explore this scenic and historically rich landscape that, according to the late historian C. Vann Woodward, has “soaked up more of the blood, sweat, and tears of American history than any other part of the country.”
The primary transportation goal of the Journey Through Hallowed Ground National Scenic Byway is to “Promote the creation and maintenance of transportation systems that employ context sensitive design and protect efficient, safe, and enjoyable travel through the corridor for all modes and types of users while maintaining the character defining features of the corridor.”
The Journey Through Hallowed Ground Wayfinding and Signage Master Plan employs the art of using visual information such as signage, maps, landmarks and icons to help navigate pedestrians and vehicles through an unfamiliar and complex environment. These environmental clues direct users to a destination and allow them to experience the site without confusion, creating a positive feeling and sense of comfort and security along the Journey Through Hallowed Ground National Scenic Byway.
The Journey Through Hallowed Ground Corridor Management Plan (CMP) is designed to reflect the desires of each town, city, and county along the Journey Through Hallowed Ground National Scenic Byway. The CMP seeks to promote, conserve and enhance the Byway corridor’s scenic, historic, archaeological, cultural, natural and recreational resources and to implement strategies for sustainable tourism development based on those resources.
As part of the commemoration of the American Civil War Sesquicentennial, the Journey Through Hallowed Ground Partnership asked its Leadership Council, which consists of the mayors and chairs of Boards of Supervisors in the Journey Through Hallowed Ground, how best to acknowledge the sacrifice of the soldiers of that war. The answer was a simple, yet eloquent, response: create a living museum. Thus the idea was born to plant one tree in honor of every soldier killed during the American Civil War. The Living Legacy Memorial Tree Project will plant 620,000 trees along the Journey Through Hallowed Ground National Scenic Byway.