An improvement to a scenic byway that will enhance access to an area for the purpose of recreation, including water-related recreation. [23 U.S.C. 162(c)(5)]
Category 5 is focused on helping byway visitors access existing recreation facilities. Funds cannot be used to create new recreation facilities. Enhancing access to a recreation area includes projects such as bicycle and pedestrian facilities, modifications to the roadway or parking facilities in order to accommodate buses, recreational vehicles, or vehicles pulling trailers. Parking and trails serving water-related recreation are eligible for byway funds, however, water-related recreation facilities, such as a marina or boat dock, are not eligible for byway funds.
Just 24 Category 5 projects totaling more than $10 million have been awarded since 2001. Byway funding totaled $4.4 million in this category. The dollars leveraged ratio was $1.46 for this category.
Per Program Dollar
Figure 17 : Profile for Access to Recreation Grant Impacts
In 2006, the Peter Norbeck Scenic Byway in South Dakota received $177,920 for a project to remove barriers for persons with disabilities by re-constructing a lakeside picnic area, restroom, trail, and fishing areas. In their grant application, the applicants wrote the following:
The project brings this facility up to current accessibility standards. In addition, riparian areas damaged by past un-controlled recreation use, will be restored to a natural condition. Bismarck Lake, originally built in 1936, has a timeless appearance. However, the facilities, last up-dated in the 1970's, were not constructed to provide recreation access for persons with mobility disabilities. This project benefits the byway traveler by eliminating pedestrian barriers that would limit their opportunity to experience the intrinsic scenic and geologic qualities this landscape is known for.
When referring to the visitors experiencing the wonders of this byway, the application stated that:
to do it full justice, they should get out and walk. For a person who uses a wheelchair, or a parent with an infant in a stroller, this project will provide an opportunity to experience the quiet solitude of a pristine lake, view wildlife in their natural setting, experience fishing, or contemplate the wonders around them - fulfilling the dream that Peter Norbeck envisioned 80 years ago.