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Group seeks National Scenic Byway nomination for Lincoln Highway in northern Indiana

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DYER, Indiana — A new campaign is underway to have the Lincoln Highway in northern Indiana nominated as a National Scenic Byway.

The Indiana Lincoln Highway Association is creating a corridor management plan that includes how to market the highway, preserve its history and develop tourism around the roadway.

"If we can get them out on the road there are some unbelievable things they should stop and see," said Jeff Blair, president of the Indiana Lincoln Highway Association.

Another goal of the campaign is to encourage tourism-related business along with highway, which runs across the northern part of the state from Allen to Lake counties, The (Munster) Times (http://bit.ly/1IgUd1l ) reported.

"We want people driving up and down the road buying stuff, and along the way, if they learn a little history, that's great," Blair said.

Consultants working on the report agree that the history of the century-old highway is important.

"It's not about the road, it's about the stories and the attractions and everything around the road," said Cynthia Bowen, director of planning and landscape architecture for CHA Companies of Indianapolis.

The highway passes through eight county courthouses in Indiana and other historical downtown areas, according to Kurt Garner, a historic preservation consultant working on the report.

The Indiana Lincoln Highway Association is brainstorming ways to attract travelers to different locations along the highway's routes. Among the ideas is highlighting restaurants, activities and other points of interest along the way.

Lincoln Highway, completed in 1913, was the nation's first coast-to-coast highway. After a significant re-routing in 1928, it now runs through 14 states, from New York to California.

The highway already has National Scenic Byway status in Ohio and Illinois, and the stretch of the road in Indiana has a state byway designation.

The group plans to have its corridor plan completed by the end of 2016.


Information from: The Times, http://www.thetimesonline.com

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