Press Release
  Contact: Steven Strohmeier, Program Associate, (202) 543-6200, ext. 18

                                Join Us

                             Scenic Summit:
                    Action for America’s Communities,
                     Countryside, and Public Lands

            April 21-24, 2002, Adam’s Mark Hotel, Denver, CO

    (Washington, DC) – Scenic America* and EDAW, Inc.** today announced
joint sponsorship of a groundbreaking national conference to accelerate
efforts to protect America’s natural beauty and distinctive community
character in the early 21st century.  Speakers include nationally known
experts in their fields.  (Subsequent press releases will announce these
speakers as we confirm them.) Participants will include citizens and
professionals who care about the future of America’s landscape:
political leaders, educators, community activists, landscape architects,
business leaders, environmental psychologists, land managers,
city/county planners, public agency administrators, Native American
environmental leaders, researchers, artists, writers, and travel and
tourism officials.

    “America the Beautiful is disappearing,” said Meg Maguire, President
of Scenic America.  “Sprawling subdivisions, towering billboards,
look-alike strip malls and franchises, cluttered signs, unscreened
junkyards, invasive power lines, and poorly sited wireless
communications towers destroy the intrinsic character of our towns,
neighborhoods, and public lands.”

    Craig Taggart of EDAW, Inc. underscored that the principal purpose
of the conference is to frame an action agenda to guide citizens and
professionals as they work closely to build an activist movement to
reverse this loss.

     “The beginning of a new century offers an opportunity to protect
the beauty of America’s landscapes and to set a national agenda for
scenic conservation.  We must build on the craft and creativity of past
conservationists by actively engaging those with the talent and
commitment needed to reclaim the rich scenic heritage that is America
the Beautiful.  As a nation we have the resources, tools, and expertise
to protect, restore, and beautify our surroundings while accomplishing
many useful and productive purposes on the land.  Now is a fitting time
to bring these resources, and public attention, to bear on the health of
our national landscape,” said Taggart.

    The Scenic Summit: Action for America’s Communities, Countryside,
and Public Lands will draw on leading experts to address how to turn
best practices into common practice.  Before the conference, a panel of
nationally recognized experts, citizen activists, and business
representatives will prepare a draft Scenic Action Agenda.  At the
conference, Scenic Summit participants will debate and revise the Scenic
Action Agenda to create a collaborative “living document” to guide
scenic conservation efforts in the 21st century.

 The Scenic Action Agenda will detail specific strategies and
recommendations to:

   * Bring the visual environment to the forefront of public awareness;
   * Strengthen citizen action and expand the scenic conservation
   * Apply the analytical and decision making tools available in the
     field of visual resource analysis;
   * Make scenic resources a fundamental consideration in all public and
     private decision-making;
   * Develop educational standards, curricula, accreditation, training,
     and public awareness programs;
   * Draw public attention to the connection between health benefits,
     the economy, and visual resource management; and
   * Build partnerships for change.

    “The Scenic Summit is an opportunity for those concerned with the
future of America’s scenic environment to come together and set a
national agenda for scenic conservation to truly make a difference in
the way we plan, the way we make decisions, and the way we care for our
communities, countryside, and public lands,” said Maguire.

Scenic Summit participants will learn about and discuss a wide range of
topics including:

   * Smart Growth
   * Sign Control
   * Community Design
   * Digital Technologies
   * Protecting Working Lands
   * Visual Resource Education
   * Overhead Utilities and Telecom Tower Siting
   * Context Sensitive Highway Design
   * Beauty and the Bottom Line
   * Scenic Byways
   * Urban Forestry
   * Scenic Education
   * Resource Extraction
   * Viewshed Protection
   * Corporate Responsibility
   * Cultural Landscape Protection
   * Organizing for Scenic Conservation

    Early Scenic Summit financial supporters include the American
Society of Landscape Architects, the Federal Highway Administration (U.
S. Department of Transportation), the National Park Service (U. S.
Department of the Interior), and the Natural Resources Conservation
Service (U. S. Department of Agriculture).

    Conference brochures and registration materials will be available in
fall 2001.  Check now for updated information on the Scenic Summit
website at

NOTE: The views and conclusions contained in this document are those of
the authors and should not be interpreted as representing the opinions
or policies of the U.S. Government.  Mention of trade names of
commercial products does not constitute their endorsement by the U.S.


    Scenic America is the only national nonprofit organization dedicated
solely to protecting natural beauty and distinctive community
character.   We provide technical assistance across the nation and
through nine state affiliates (CA, FL, KY, MI, MO, NC, TX, TN, VA) on
scenic byways, billboard and sign control, context-sensitive highway
design, wireless telecommunications tower location, transportation
enhancements, and other scenic conservation issues.  We advance our #1
goal, to build a citizen movement for scenic conservation, through
education, site-specific projects in various states, grassroots
organization, and publications on preserving scenic beauty, open space,
and quality of life.

    EDAW, Inc.  Founded in 1939 and headquartered in San Francisco, EDAW
is a global land and community-based consulting firm. Comprehensive and
far-reaching professional service providers in the fields of design and
environmental science, the 710 people of EDAW integrate community
planning, urban design, landscape architecture, environmental planning
and natural resource management from 25 offices around the world.

                                 – ## -

Steven Strohmeier
Program Associate
Scenic America
801 Pennsylvania Ave.  SE
Suite 300
Washington, DC  20009
Tel: 202-543-6200 ext.18
Fax: 202-543-9130

* * Get ready for the Scenic Summit in Denver in April 2002!* *
              for more information see