Here’s How You Can Help Save Route 66 From Extinction
The Godfather of all American highways could use a pick-me-up
About a month ago, we listed 50 worldly destinations we all should see before they go for good.
Route 66 made an appearance on our somber list … and it’s also made it onto the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s recently released “America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places for 2018” compendium.
It’s true. The Godfather of American highways and westward exploration, the kind of road that winds with the land like rivers, instead of simply bulldozing through, is in dire straits, and has been for decades. Little funding has gone towards repairing the crumbling highway, and though mention of the route elicits star-spangled nostalgia, how many people in a given room have actually driven the thing? Route 66 has essentially become Meg Ryan’s around-the-corner bookstore.
Thankfully, there is enough sensibility left in this muddled nation to save Route 66. The Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program, instituted in 1999, runs out in 2019, and in an attempt to repair and preserve the road, a bill was introduced in 2017 to Congress, with intentions to declare the highway our 20th National Historic Trail.
Having passed the House of Reps, the bill — which vows to respect the trail’s “idiosyncratic” nature, and disbars the government from regulating the surrounding lands — now awaits a decision from the Senate, and we can think of exactly 2,451 reasons why saving this road is a no-brainer.
The best way for you to help make sure the bill goes through? Sign the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s petition here. It even lets you leave a personalized note, so don’t hold back.
Tell ’em about the kicks you’ve gotten, as well as the ones you still plan to get.
Image: Wikimedia Commons
See the world from your inbox.
Sign up for The Journey, our Travel newsletter.