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Project Activity by Category of Eligible Activities

Figure 8 aggregates the total number of projects from the years 2001 to 2006 by the eight categories. During this period, 40 percent of total projects fell within the corridor management planning category. Information and interpretation activities comprised 19 percent of the total number of projects. Byway facility investments comprised 18 percent of total projects. At the other end of the spectrum, safety improvements made up just 1 percent of the total number of projects. Access to recreation totaled just 2 percent. State and Indian tribe byway program development comprised just 3 percent while resource protection comprised 5 percent.

Figure 8 : Distribution of Grant-Funded Projects by Eligible Project Activity, 2001-2006[1]
(Percent of Funded Projects)

Pie chart showing the breakdown by eligible project activity of the number of projects funded by NSBP grants from 2001 through 2006, as follows: State or Indian tribe scenic byway program development - 3% Corridor management plan development or implementation - 40% Safety improvements - 1% Byway facilities - 18% Access to recreation - 2% Resource protection - 5% Information and interpretation - 19% Marketing - 12%

Table 9 and Figure 9 present the same data broken down and distributed by year and eligible category. As would be expected, due to the increased number of byways, the increasing amount of funding, and the Program's growing popularity, the number of projects within almost every category has risen each year. The one exception to this rule is the byway program development category; where the number of projects decreased over time. As the collection has matured, the nation has reached a point where most States have well-developed byway programs. The post SAFETEA-LU focus within the Program toward Indian tribes will likely encourage more tribes to develop byway programs. As a result, this category could see a small but steady number of new programs developed each year in the coming decade.

Table 9 : Number of Projects Funded, by Year and Eligible Activity Category
Eligible Activity Category 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Total
State or Indian tribe scenic byway program development 9 8 5 4 7 2 35
Corridor management plan development or implementation 56 47 90 70 80 122 465
Safety improvements 2 3 0 2 4 3 14
Byway facilities 31 26 38 33 34 47 209
Access to recreation 0 6 4 2 6 6 24
Resource protection 7 11 14 8 6 16 62
Information and interpretation 17 31 29 31 36 78 222
Marketing 20 7 22 17 34 35 135
Total 142 139 202 167 207 309 1,166
Unknown   1 7 2     10

Figure 9 : Number of Projects Funded by Year and Eligible Category

Grouped column chart showing the data from Table 9 on number of projects funded by year and eligible activity category. Each group of 6 columns represents one of the 8 eligible program activities, and each column within the group represents the number of projects funded in that category in a specific year from 2001 through 2006.

Corridor management planning, byway facility investments, and information and interpretation projects have all increased since 2001. While growth varied somewhat from year to year, the trend was steadily upward in all categories.

Table 10 and Figure 10 illustrate the total grant funding awarded by year within each of the eight eligible activity categories. An important perspective is the relationship between the number of projects and the costs per project in each category, or the average cost per project by eligible category. Are there fewer safety and resource protection projects, for example, because they cost more per project, require coordination with a transportation agency or land acquisition, or require specialize skills (engineering, real estate) not generally found with byway groups; or because they represent more complex and site-specific activities than some of the other funding categories? Conversely, as most byways tend to focus on marketing and interpretation projects in the early years, what trends toward higher priced projects may be observed as the Program moves forward?

Table 10 : Grant Funds Awarded by Year and Eligible Activity Category
Eligible Activity Category 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Total
State or Indian tribe scenic byway program development $473,768 $1,417,237 $851,200 $609,000 $715,048 $282,616 $4,348,869
Corridor management plan development or implementation $3,633,673 $2,738,193 $3,753,408 $2,167,434 $3,404,033 $5,945,913 $21,642,654
Safety improvements $529,022 $2,169,400 $0 $4,019,398 $1,058,160 $318,820 $8,094,800
Byway facilities $10,816,152 $5,740,207 $6,041,612 $7,346,062 $7,318,746 $7,131,395 $44,394,174
Access to recreation $0 $1,980,088 $609,800 $207,616 $1,108,707 $524,888 $4,431,099
Resource protection $874,460 $3,902,875 $3,363,566 $1,133,489 $2,480,516 $2,164,893 $13,919,799
Information and interpretation $1,102,860 $3,751,600 $4,856,757 $3,507,382 $3,447,911 $5,934,731 $22,601,241
Marketing $3,053,153 $1,353,800 $1,190,132 $2,876,121 $2,924,379 $3,260,551 $14,658,136
Total $20,483,088 $23,053,400 $20,666,475 $21,866,502 $22,457,500 $25,563,807 $134,090,772
Unknown   $30,000 $5,661,275 $1,988,200     $7,679,475

Figure 10 : Grant Funds Awarded by Year and Eligible Activity Category

Grouped column chart showing the data from Table 10 on on the amount of NSBP grant funds awarded by year and eligible activity category. Each group of 6 columns represents one of the 8 eligible program activities, and each column within the group represents the total amount of grant funding awarded in that category in a specific year from 2001 through 2006.

Table 11 and Figure 11 address this question and indicate that corridor management planning and information/interpretation projects tend to use fewer funds per project, while safety improvements, byway facilities, access to recreation, or resource protection have higher per project costs. It is clear from the fluctuation in data on a year-to-year basis, that occasional, specific, high cost projects are the likely cause.

The range of average costs per project by category is approximately $30,000 to $700,000 with most projects being in the $100,000 to $200,000 range.

Table 11 : Average Grant Amounts by Year and Eligible Activity Category
Eligible Activity Category 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Total
State or Indian tribe scenic byway program development $52,641 $177,155 $170,240 $152,250 $102,150 $141,308 $124,253
Corridor management plan development or implementation $64,887 $58,259 $41,705 $30,963 $42,550 $48,737 $46,543
Safety improvements $264,511 $723,133 n.a. $2,009,699 $264,540 $106,273 $578,200
Byway facilities $348,908 $220,777 $158,990 $222,608 $215,257 $151,732 $212,412
Access to recreation n.a. $330,015 $152,450 $103,808 $184,785 $87,481 $184,629
Resource protection $124,923 $354,807 $240,255 $141,686 $413,419 $135,306 $224,513
Information and interpretation $64,874 $121,019 $167,474 $113,141 $95,775 $76,086 $101,807
Marketing $152,658 $193,400 $54,097 $169,184 $86,011 $93,159 $108,579
Total $144,247 $165,852 $102,309 $130,937 $108,490 $82,731 $115,001

Figure 11 : Average Grant Amounts by Year and Eligible Activity Category

Grouped column chart showing the data from Table 11 on average grant amount by year and eligible activity category. Each group of 6 columns represents one of the 8 eligible program activities, and each column within the group represents the average grant amount in that category in a specific year from 2001 through 2006.

Table 12 presents the total project costs (i.e., grant + match = total project cost) by year and eligible category. These data feed the information in Table 13 and Figure 13 regarding average project cost per category.

Table 12 : Total Project Cost by Year and Eligible Activity Category
Eligible Activity Category 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Total
State or Indian tribe scenic byway program development $618,960 $1,960,320 $1,064,000 $1,001,090 $898,130 $353,270 $5,895,770
Corridor management plan development or implementation $13,200,442 $4,050,625 $30,922,978 $2,750,121 $4,482,143 $7,768,795 $63,175,104
Safety improvements $767,171 $4,715,100 $0 $4,140,173 $1,469,700 $1,285,400 $12,377,544
Byway facilities $28,742,168 $13,410,038 $10,889,240 $14,880,541 $24,182,623 $10,041,955 $102,146,565
Access to recreation $0 $6,095,675 $762,250 $259,520 $3,084,548 $682,860 $10,884,853
Resource protection $2,729,400 $7,369,679 $4,598,925 $2,064,366 $7,308,152 $10,359,251 $34,429,773
Information and interpretation $1,432,882 $5,994,662 $10,637,164 $4,656,904 $4,556,750 $8,275,794 $35,554,156
Marketing $4,176,776 $2,399,150 $1,714,970 $3,799,223 $4,758,543 $4,331,411 $21,180,073
Total $51,667,799 $45,995,249 $60,589,527 $33,551,938 $50,740,589 $43,098,736 $285,643,838
Unknown             $0

Table 13 and Figure 12 indicate that average project cost was significantly higher for two years of safety improvements, but in all other years was comparable to the other eligible activity categories. Generally the distribution and grant award levels reflect that safety improvements, byway facilities, access to recreation and resource protection all had higher average project costs than State/Indian tribe byway program development, corridor planning, information/ interpretation or marketing. Again, this may be attributed to the higher costs often involved with highway construction and facilities, for safety improvements; and the costs of land acquisition, legal structures (conservation easements, for example) and facilities construction for access to recreation and resource protection projects.

Table 13 : Average Total Project Cost, by Year and Eligible Activity Category
Eligible Activity Category 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Total
State or Indian tribe scenic byway program development $68,773 $245,040 $212,800 $250,273 $128,304 $176,635 $168,451
Corridor management plan development or implementation $235,722 $86,184 $343,589 $39,287 $56,027 $63,679 $135,860
Safety improvements $383,586 $1,571,700 n.a. $2,070,087 $367,425 $428,467 $884,110
Byway facilities $927,167 $515,771 $286,559 $450,925 $711,254 $213,659 $488,740
Access to recreation n.a. $1,015,946 $190,563 $129,760 $514,091 $113,810 $453,536
Resource protection $389,914 $669,971 $328,495 $258,046 $1,218,025 $647,453 $555,319
Information and interpretation $84,287 $193,376 $366,799 $150,223 $126,576 $106,100 $160,154
Marketing $208,839 $342,736 $77,953 $223,484 $139,957 $123,755 $156,889
Total $363,858 $330,901 $299,948 $200,910 $245,124 $139,478 $244,978

Figure 12 : Average Project Cost, by Year and Eligible Activity Category

Grouped column chart showing the data from Table 13 on the average cost of funded project by grant year and eligible activity category. Each group of 6 columns represents one of the 8 eligible program activities, and each column within the group represents the average cost of projects funded in that category in a specific year from 2001 through 2006.

Lastly, Table 14 provides ratio measurements of the amount of matching money that was leveraged by byway grants. In other words, for each dollar of grant expenditure, how much money was leveraged from matching sources and other contributors? Due to the 20 percent minimum match requirement, at least $0.20 should always be leveraged. But, as discussed above, match levels are often higher. The highest leveraged amount was $7.24 in 2003 under the corridor management planning category. The next highest leverage levels were $3.79 under resource protection activities in 2006 and $3.03 under safety improvements in 2006. The yellow-highlighted cells indicate leverages of 100% ($1.00) or more.

Table 14 : Dollars Leveraged per Dollar of Grant Funds, by Year and Eligible Activity Category
Eligible Activity Category 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Total
State or Indian tribe byway program development $0.31 $0.38 $0.25 $0.64 $0.26 $0.25 $0.36
Corridor management plan development or implementation $2.63 $0.48 $7.24 $0.27 $0.32 $0.31 $1.92
Safety improvements $0.45 $1.17   $0.03 $0.39 $3.03 $0.53
Byway facilities $1.66 $1.34 $0.80 $1.03 $2.30 $0.41 $1.30
Access to recreation   $2.08 $0.25 $0.25 $1.78 $0.30 $1.46
Resource protection $2.12 $0.89 $0.37 $0.82 $1.95 $3.79 $1.47
Information and interpretation $0.30 $0.60 $1.19 $0.33 $0.32 $0.39 $0.57
Marketing $0.37 $0.77 $0.44 $0.32 $0.63 $0.33 $0.44
Total $1.52 $1.00 $1.93 $0.53 $1.26 $0.69 $1.13

Directions for the Future

These data suggest that the grant program is distributing funds in a relatively equitable manner. That is, it does not appear that any particular categories have received disproportionate shares of funds. While there are variations in the year to year data, it seems likely that those variations are the result of particular high costs associated with one or two projects.

Data should continue to be closely monitored and the Program should review corridor management planning and implementation projects against the other seven categories to better assess evolving trends in grant funding or needs for project types not fully accessing available grant funding categories.

  1. Note that this chart covers only the years 2001 through 2006. The analysis of funded projects did not include the years 1999 and 2000. ^ back
Updated: 09/03/2013
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