Beaumont has been awarded Bronze Scenic City certification by Scenic Texas. Beaumont is one of 15 cities in the state to earn first-time or upgraded certification for the 2014-2019 period.
The Scenic City Certification Program is the first in the United States to incorporate a comprehensive set of standards for design and development of public roadways and spaces into one program. The program draws a direct correlation between the success of a city’s economic development efforts and the visual appearance of its public spaces, and recognizes municipalities that implement rigorous scenic standards.
“This award is a result of our commitment to quality-of-life initiatives, beautification projects and long-term efforts to adopt and enforce codes and ordinances,” said Chris Boone, Director of Community Development and Planning. “We are confident that these efforts pay dividends by promoting economic development.”
A city must meet three criteria before applying to the program: have a highly regulated and strictly enforced sign code, have a ban on new billboards, and maintain a landscaping and tree-planting program. Once the application stage is completed, the city’s existing standards are assessed and scored based on a model of more than 70 criteria ranging from percentage of park and open space, strong litter enforcement laws and street lighting standards, to parking lot landscaping and utility line management. Under the scoring system, an applicant earns recognized, bronze, silver, gold or platinum certification.
In granting the city its bronze status, Scenic Texas took note of Beaumont’s comprehensive beautification plan, which included landscaping medians throughout the city. Also a factor was the renovation of Calder Street — the city’s first ”complete street,” incorporating landscaping, buried utilities, brick sidewalks, bike lanes and decorative lighting.
Municipalities earning the Scenic City designation will be officially recognized on Thursday, Oct. 2, in conjunction with the annual Texas Municipal League conference. For more information, visit www.sceniccitycertification.org.