Blue Ridge Parkway

The Blue Ridge Parkway is a National Parkway and All-American Road in the United States, noted for its scenic beauty. The parkway, which is the longest linear park in the U.S., runs for 469 miles (755 km) through 29 counties in Virginia and North Carolina, linking Shenandoah National Park to Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It runs mostly along the spine of the Blue Ridge, a major mountain chain that is part of the Appalachian Mountains. Its southern terminus is at U.S. Route 441 (US 441) on the boundary between Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the Qualla Boundary of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in North Carolina, from which it travels north to Shenandoah National Park in Virginia. The roadway continues through Shenandoah as Skyline Drive, a similar scenic road which is managed by a different National Park Service unit. Both Skyline Drive and the Virginia portion of the Blue Ridge Parkway are part of Virginia State Route 48 (SR...Read more

The Blue Ridge Parkway is a National Parkway and All-American Road in the United States, noted for its scenic beauty. The parkway, which is the longest linear park in the U.S., runs for 469 miles (755 km) through 29 counties in Virginia and North Carolina, linking Shenandoah National Park to Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It runs mostly along the spine of the Blue Ridge, a major mountain chain that is part of the Appalachian Mountains. Its southern terminus is at U.S. Route 441 (US 441) on the boundary between Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the Qualla Boundary of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in North Carolina, from which it travels north to Shenandoah National Park in Virginia. The roadway continues through Shenandoah as Skyline Drive, a similar scenic road which is managed by a different National Park Service unit. Both Skyline Drive and the Virginia portion of the Blue Ridge Parkway are part of Virginia State Route 48 (SR 48), though this designation is not signed.

The parkway has been the most visited unit of the National Park System every year since 1946 except four (1949, 2013, 2016 and 2019). Land on either side of the road is owned and maintained by the National Park Service, and in many places parkway land is bordered by United States Forest Service property. There is no fee for using the parkway; however, commercial vehicles are prohibited without approval from the Park Service Headquarters, near Asheville, North Carolina. The roadway is not maintained in the winter, and sections that pass over especially high elevations and through tunnels are often impassable and therefore closed from late fall through early spring. Weather is extremely variable in the mountains, so conditions and closures often change rapidly. The speed limit is never higher than 45 mph (72 km/h) and is lower in some sections.

In addition to the road, the parkway has a folk art center located at mile marker 382 and a visitor center located at mile marker 384, both near Asheville. There are also numerous parking areas at trailheads for the various hiking trails that intersect the parkway, and several campgrounds located along the parkway allow for overnight stays. The Blue Ridge Music Center (also part of the park) is located in Galax, and Mount Mitchell (the highest point in eastern North America) is only accessible via North Carolina Highway 128 (NC 128), which intersects the parkway at milepost 355.4.

 View south at the north end of the parkway at Rockfish Gap, Virginia

Begun during the administration of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, the project was originally called the Appalachian Scenic Highway.

Original plans called for the parkway to connect Shenandoah National Park and Great Smoky Mountains National Park with the parkway either turning west into Tennessee at Linville, North Carolina, or continuing southward through North Carolina. Secretary of the Interior Harold L. Ickes put together a three-person panel to study the possible routes the parkway could take.[1] That panel, named after its chairman George L.P. Radcliffe, recommended the Tennessee route.[1] However, Roosevelt had remained friends with Josephus Daniels, Roosevelt's superior as Secretary of the Navy during World War I. Daniels wanted the parkway to go through North Carolina and persuaded Ickes to choose the North Carolina route.[2] The Bruce Bowers documentary The Blue Ridge Parkway: The Long and Winding Road gives Congressman Robert Doughton the credit for getting the route changed. The documentary claims Doughton worked to pass the Social Security Act only after getting the route changed.[3]

Most construction was carried out by private contractors under federal contracts under an authorization by Ickes in his role as federal public works administrator. Work began on September 11, 1935, near Cumberland Knob in North Carolina; construction in Virginia began the following February. On June 30, 1936, Congress formally authorized the project as the Blue Ridge Parkway and placed it under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service. Some work was carried out by various New Deal public works agencies. The Works Progress Administration did some roadway construction. Crews from the Emergency Relief Administration carried out landscape work and development of parkway recreation areas. Personnel from four Civilian Conservation Corps camps worked on roadside cleanup, roadside plantings, grading slopes, and improving adjacent fields and forest lands. During World War II, the CCC crews were replaced by conscientious objectors in the Civilian Public Service program.

The parkway's construction created jobs in the region, but also displaced many residents and created new rules and regulations for landowners, including requirements related to how farmers could transport crops.[4] Residents could no longer build on their lands without permission, or develop land except for agricultural use.[4] They were not permitted to use the parkway for any commercial travel but were required to transport equipment and materials on side roads.[4]

The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians were also affected by the parkway, which was built through their lands.[5] From 1935 to 1940, they resisted giving up the right-of-way through the Qualla Boundary, and they were successful in gaining more favorable terms from the U.S. government.[5] Specifically, the revised bill "specified the parkway route, assured the $40,000 payment for the tribe's land, and required the state to build [a] regular highway through the Soco Valley". (The highway referred to is part of U.S. Route 19.)[5] Cherokee leaders participated in the dedications when the Cherokee sections opened in the 1950s.

Construction of the parkway was complete by the end of 1966 with one notable exception.[6] The 7.7-mile (12.4 km) stretch including the Linn Cove Viaduct around Grandfather Mountain did not open until 1987.[7] The project took over 52 years to complete.

Due to serious damage in 2004 from Hurricane Frances, then again by Hurricane Ivan, many areas along the parkway were closed until the spring of 2005, with two areas that were not fully repaired until the spring of 2006.

The parkway was on North Carolina's version of the America the Beautiful quarter in 2015.[8]

Proposed extension

An extension of the parkway from its terminus at Beech Gap, North Carolina to a point north of Atlanta, Georgia, was proposed in 1961 by North Carolina Congressman Roy A. Taylor. The route was proposed to pass Whiteside Mountain, Bridal Veil Falls, Cuilasaja Gorge, and Estatoah Falls, ending between Atlanta and Gainesville, Georgia after crossing the Chattahoochee River and passing to the east of Lake Sidney Lanier. By 1963 the National Park Service had proposed a terminus at Interstate 75 north of Marietta, Georgia, in the vicinity of Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park.[9] President Lyndon B. Johnson signed a bill to extend the parkway in 1967. A five-year schedule was proposed, with a budget of $87,536,000 (equivalent to $589 million in 2022[10]). In 1970 planning was interrupted by the projected commercial development of land in the proposed path. Increasing costs associated with rerouting and the passage of time coincided with efforts to cut national debt and concerns about the project's environmental impact, and the project stalled in 1973. The project was formally cancelled on September 11, 1985; no construction work had ever taken place.[11][12]

^ a b Whisnant, Anne Mitchell (2006). Super-Scenic Motorway: A Blue Ridge Parkway History. The University of North Carolina Press. ISBN 978-0-8078-3037-6. ^ D.G. Martin (April 28, 2021). "Without Daniels, parkway would have gone to Tennessee". Salisbury Post. Archived from the original on May 3, 2021. Retrieved May 3, 2021. ^ Storrow, Emily (May 8, 2015). "Doughton got Parkway to N.C." Wilkes Journal-Patriot. Archived from the original on May 3, 2021. Retrieved May 3, 2021. ^ a b c Chesto, Shawna (Summer 2007). "The Effect of the Blue Ridge Parkway on Appalachian Farmers". Appalachian State University. Archived from the original on July 10, 2015. Retrieved April 19, 2015. ^ a b c Mitchell, Anne V. (Winter 1997). "Culture, History, and Development on the Qualla Boundary". Appalachian Journal. 24 (2): 144–191. JSTOR 40933835. ^ Brown, Jeff (January 2015). "Road with a View: Blue Ridge Parkway". Civil Engineering Magazine. American Society of Civil Engineers: 42–45. Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved January 4, 2016. ^ Mitchell, Monte (September 11, 2012). "25-Year-Old Linn Cove Viaduct Floats Around Grandfather Mountain". Winston-Salem Journal. Archived from the original on January 26, 2013. Retrieved October 9, 2012. ^ "America the Beautiful Quarters". United States Mint. Archived from the original on March 29, 2012. Retrieved September 6, 2010. ^ "Blue Ridge Parkway extension". 16 U.S. Code §460a–6. Archived from the original on February 25, 2022. Retrieved February 27, 2021 – via Legal Information Institute. ^ Johnston, Louis; Williamson, Samuel H. (2023). "What Was the U.S. GDP Then?". MeasuringWorth. Retrieved November 30, 2023. United States Gross Domestic Product deflator figures follow the Measuring Worth series. ^ "The Unbuilt Blue Ridge Parkway". University of North Carolina. Archived from the original on February 25, 2022. Retrieved February 28, 2021. ^ Lauro, Daniele. "'Enjoyment Without Impairment': Conrad L. Wirth's Mission 66 and the Blue Ridge Parkway". Driving through Time. DocSouth. Archived from the original on February 23, 2021. Retrieved February 27, 2021.
Photographies by:
jay8085 - CC BY 2.0
Statistics: Position
7936
Statistics: Rank
5105

Add new comment

CAPTCHA
Security
518247639Click/tap this sequence: 1162
Esta pregunta es para comprobar si usted es un visitante humano y prevenir envíos de spam automatizado.

Google street view

Where can you sleep near Blue Ridge Parkway ?

Booking.com
551.331 visits in total, 9.238 Points of interest, 405 Destinations, 142 visits today.