Scenic Texas developed the Scenic City Certification Program after discovering that the success of a city’s economic development efforts is directly linked with its public spaces’ visual appearance. The Scenic City Program recognizes Texas municipalities that implement high-quality scenic standards for public roadways and spaces. It also incentivizes cities to adopt and enforce the kind of criteria that enhance economic development and improve quality of life.
A city may apply to earn certification if it already has:
- a strictly regulated and enforced sign code,
- a ban on new billboards, and
- a landscaping and tree planting program.
A city earns points for these required elements, and builds additional points by providing evidence for existing municipal ordinances, regulations, and programs that show the city’s commitment to scenic standards. Certification levels are Recognized, Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum.
The Scenic City application contains 71 criteria that award points, including requirements for parkland designation, landscaping, sign restrictions, litter prevention, street lighting standards, and more. Cities may also provide evidence for additional programs that could be evaluated for their scenic merits (e.g. historic preservation, beach/lake/river cleanups, retention basins, scenic programs related to unique geographic features).
The Scenic City Certification Program believes that any city’s citizens are entitled to a green, uncluttered, visually appealing place to live, work, and play – a truly Scenic City.