2024 Colorado Byways Awards Presented at Symposium

News Release

June 13, 2024

Alamosa — Four organizations have been recognized for their outstanding contributions to the state’s Scenic and Historic Byways.

Colorado’s Scenic and Historic Byways Commission presented awards for Protection, Partnerships, Promotion, and Placemaking at this year’s Byways Symposium.

The first award, for Protection, was given to Keep It Colorado, for their outstanding stewardship of statewide resources. Their efforts included releasing “Conserving Colorado: A 10-year Roadmap for the Future of Private Land Conservation,” a statewide plan to help prioritize preservation efforts. Keep It Colorado focuses on five areas, including a forum, policy advocacy, health & sustainability solutions, coalition-building, and advancing a conservation culture.

Colorado Electric Byways, a collaboration between the Colorado Energy Office, Colorado Department of Transportation, and Colorado Tourism Office, received the Partnership award. These agencies collaborated to engage communities along the Byways to apply for grants to install Electric Vehicle Charging Stations. Once a Byway corridor has met specific guidelines, the team then recommends the Byway be approved by the Byways Commission to be a designated Colorado Electric Byway. Colorado has 17 Electric Byways to promote to electric vehicle owners.

The third award recognizes Promotion, through ColoradoByways.com, to History Colorado and the Colorado Tourism Office. A branded URL has provided a successful landing page on Colorado.com and was funded through the Colorado State Historical Fund, with matching funds and coordination from the CTO. In 2023, the landing page baseline analytics showed a total of 512,328 total views and 194,918 article views. The pages have had robust views, strong engagement, and lots of time spent with the content (one minute+ average time spent per “byway” page).

Local achievements are critical, so the fourth award for Placemaking was presented to the Pawnee Pioneer Trails Scenic & Historic Byway’s Committee. While work progresses, the Byway has been consistently working with an engaged committee, a strong leader, updated their logo, map, and Corridor Management Plan, as well as hosted the Colorado Byways Photo Exhibit at Overland Trail Museum.

"These awards recognize the dedicated work that our Scenic and Historic Byway organizations and agencies deliver," says Heidi Pankow, current chair, and western Byways representative of the governor-appointed Byways Commission.

The Colorado Byways Symposium 2024 was hosted by the Los Caminos Antiguos Scenic & Historic Byway and the Sangre de Cristo National Heritage Area in the culturally rich and beautiful San Luis Valley.

"It is gratifying to get together and recognize amazing achievements at our 35th anniversary event," said Lenore Bates, Colorado Byways program manager. "We appreciate the award winners, participants, sponsors, national presenters, hosts, and volunteers for making the Colorado Byways Symposium 2024 a success. Furthermore, having our Sister-Byways delegates join us from Scenic Byway Hokkaido, have inspired us until we meet again."

About the Byways

Established in 1989, the Colorado Scenic and Historic Byways program is comprised of 26 outstanding road trips, which includes 13 America's Byways® (and two of those are All-American Roads), 10 National Forest Scenic Byways, and three Bureau of Land Management Backcountry Byways. The statewide system is comprised of nearly 2,600 miles of roadway through 48 of Colorado’s 64 counties. More information is available at: https://www.codot.gov/travel/colorado-byways