Skip to content U.S. Department of Transportation/Federal Highway AdministrationU.S. Department of Transportation/Federal Highway Administration

Office of Planning, Environment, & Realty (HEP)
Planning · Environment · Real Estate

Events Guidance Publications Awards Contacts

Byway Length

The routes in the America's Byways® collection vary not only in geography and landscape character, but also in length, ranging from less than 10 miles to more than 1,000 miles (Figure 4 ). At the upper end of this range are Alaska's Marine Highway, with 3,500 miles[1] of ferry routes, and two multi-State routes - the Great River Road (2,069 miles)[2] and Historic Route 66 (1,410 miles—non-contiguous). At the other extreme, the Las Vegas Strip is only five miles long, and two other byways are shorter than ten miles: Red Rock Scenic Byway (eight miles) and the Arroyo Seco Parkway (nine miles). The median length of the 126 byways is 85 miles, and half of the designated byways are between 46 and 165 miles in length.

Figure 4 : Lengths of Designated Byways
Chart showing the lengths of the designated byways in the America's Byways® collection. Byway length is shown in miles on the vertical axis, which is logarithmic with 5 major divisions: 1, 10, 100, 1000 and 10,000. Each of the 126 byways is represented by a dot, and the dots are evenly spaced horizontally with the shortest byways on the left and the longest on the right. The plot approximates an S-curve, sloping steeply at the left and right and more gently in the middle. The three shortest and three longest byways are labeled, as follows: Shortest: Las Vegas Strip - 5 miles Red Rock Scenic Byway - 8 miles Arroyo Seco Historic Parkway / Route 110 - 9 miles Longest: Historic Route 66 - 1,410 miles Great River Road - 2,068 miles Alaska's Marine Highway - 3,500 miles

  1. Both the website of the Alaska Marine Highway System and America's Byways state that the Alaska's Marine Highway All-American Road is "over 3,500 miles" long, but other sources give different figures:

    • The Federal Highway Administration's Come Closer publication and the 2002 nomination for National Scenic Byway designation gives the length of the byway as 8,834 miles, which may be intended to represent the total coastline between Bellingham, Washington, and Unalaska, Alaska.
    • The 2002 Corridor Partnership Plan cites the 8,834-mile figure but also lists the lengths of the byway's three segments, totaling to 2,698 miles.
    • The official "Alaska's Scenic Byways" website (Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities) gives the byway's length as 3,100 miles. ^ back
  2. According to America's Byways, "the Great River Road National Scenic Byway incorporates riverside roads in six of the ten states that border the Mississippi River: Arkansas, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Mississippi, and Wisconsin." These six State byways total 2,200 miles in length. However, the official list of America's Byways® includes Missouri's Little Dixie Highway of the Great River Road as a separate byway and not as part of the multi-State Great River Road. The five remaining State segments total 2,069 miles in length.^ back

Updated: 09/03/2013
HEP Home Planning Environment Real Estate
Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000