Supports route as a State Byway

The City of Warren has lent its support to an application to make Route 6 a state-designated byway.

While members of Warren City Council proposed language changes to the draft resolution during their meeting Monday night, council did pass the resolution.

Warren County Planning Director Dan Glotz was on hand to pitch the idea to council.

Glotz said that the PA Route 6 Alliance, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization designed to highlight and promote Route 6, was designated by the administration of former Gov. Ed Rendell in 2005.

He said the group is “trying to secure a designation as a Pennsylvania byway. This would carry the route from the New York state line all the way to the Ohio line.”

Several “intrinsic qualities” are considered when identifying byways which include, according to Glotz, natural, historical, recreational, archaeological and scenic characteristics. He said the designation would put the group in a good place for funding for projects such as scenic overlooks as well as funding for downtown areas.

“By securing this designation, it is a good economic driver,” said Glotz. He then asked council to approve a resolution in support of the byway application.

“Our plan is to run the byway right through downtown on Business 6,” he said, “to benefit the businesses that lie along that section of the route.”

Councilman Sam Harvey asked if supporting the application brings any obligations or requirements to the city.

“None more than you are doing now,” said Glotz, noting that the city has signage regulations already in place.

“Part of the process will be putting together a management plan for the route,” he added. “(It) will involve all of the communities that lie along the route.”

After tweaking the resolution language to alleviate concerns about the city’s responsibilities in the future, the resolution was approved unanimously.

PA Route 6 Alliance Executive Director Terri Dennison said that the group has obtained resolutions in support of the application from approximately 35 of over 100 total municipalities along Route 6.

Youngsville Borough Council approved a resolution of support at its January meeting.

The designation allows the roadway to be a part of state promotion efforts through the state tourism agency, PennDOT and the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED).

While the PennDOT designation as a Pennsylvania Byway doesn’t bring any additional funding with it automatically, it makes applying for state and federal program funds easier.

The designation is also a requirement to become a National Scenic Byway, which is charged with recognizing, preserving and and enhancing selected roadways throughout the country.