THE EASEMENT APPROACH: CAN IT RESCUE HIGHWAY VISUAL QUALITY?

The prospects, problems and the techniques are explored of protecting and enhancing roadside scenic quality through public acquisition of land and particularly through less-than-fee interests in land. The aspects discussed range from the public agencies' legal authority, appraisal theory and paractice, land management, communications and public relations, to intergovernemntal relations. Salient features of Title III of the 1965 Highway Beautification Act are discussed, and the results are presented of a brief survey of the states to ascertain their experience with scenic acquisitions. Remarks are also made concerning Nebraska's "Chain of Lakes" program which was carried out chiefly with fee acquisition of the land. The problems associated with scenic easement at the National Park Service are discussed. The cutting of timber and trees, and the question of valuation have presented problems. Comment is also made on the Park Service's conversion of scenic easements into fee ownership of lesser amounts of land. The Federal Highway Administration is now making a multidisciplinary study of the subject of scenic acquisitions. Current problems will be identified and options for their solution will be suggested. The importance is emphasized of quantification of goals, the correlation of land acquisition programs with local zoning and land use control programs, the problem of enforcement of less-than-fee interests, the tax structure, cost considerations, legal interests to be acquired, and the importance of when to take land in fee for scenic protection.

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00144028
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: Proceeding
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Feb 16 1977 12:00AM