Maryland’s Chesapeake Country Scenic Byway has been designated as an All-American Road by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the highest designation a road can receive. This honor was announced along with 49 new designations to the America’s Byways® collection, including 15 All-American Roads (AAR) and 34 National Scenic Byways (NSB) in 28 states.
Chesapeake Country Scenic Byway (CCSB) stretches 419 land miles from Chesapeake City to Crisfield (plus 12 nautical miles to Smith Island) and delivers an epic journey through the extraordinary landscapes and waterscapes of Maryland’s Eastern Shore. The route was designated a Maryland State Scenic Byway in 1998, the upper portion (Cecil, Kent, and Queen Anne’s counties) was designated a National Scenic Byway in 2002, and is now elevated in its entirety to All-American Road status.
“With elevation of the Chesapeake Country Scenic Byway to an All-American Road, Maryland is now home to three of the 60 All-American Roads in the United States,” said Governor Larry Hogan. “I would like to recognize everyone involved in garnering this prestigious designation. It was a rigorous multi-year effort, and the nominating committee members of the Chesapeake Country Scenic Byway Alliance worked tirelessly to maximize this opportunity to showcase the byway as one of the best driving tours in the country.”
America’s Byways®, launched in 1991, recognizes certain roads based on their intrinsic qualities, including archaeological, cultural, historic, natural, recreational, or scenic. To receive the most elite designation of All-American Road, a byway must be a destination unto itself, possess multiple characteristics that do not exist elsewhere, and be recognized internationally.
The Chesapeake Country Scenic Byway Alliance, consisting of the destination marketing organizations (DMOs) in Cecil, Kent, Caroline, Queen Anne’s, Talbot, Dorchester, Wicomico, Somerset, and Worcester counties and the executive directors from Stories of the Chesapeake, Heart of Chesapeake Country and Beach to Bay heritage areas, joined with the Maryland Department of Commerce Office of Tourism and the Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration to submit CCSB in its entirety when nominations for America’s Byways® program were opened in early 2020 for the first time in 12 years.
“Commerce’s tourism office, our sister state agencies and our many local partners are excited to officially brand the byway in the marketplace as an All-American Road and to generate further awareness of the Chesapeake Region as a world-class tourist destination,” said Maryland Commerce Secretary Kelly M. Schulz. “Roadway signage, maps, travel guides, website content and more will be updated to include the designation and to guide travelers to the attractions along the byway.”
“Maryland’s thousands of miles of roadways not only provide critical links to jobs, education and community life, but also connect every Marylander to the countless treasures of our state – scenic, historic, cultural, recreational and environmental,” said Maryland Transportation Secretary Greg Slater. “The designation of the Chesapeake Country Scenic Byway as an All-American Road places a region of enormous beauty in a national spotlight, and will no doubt benefit the state economy by increasing tourism and associated jobs on the Eastern Shore.”