Transportation & Livable Communities
The National Trust for Historic Preservation supports Federal transportation efforts directed at protecting historic and cultural resources through Section 4(f) of the Department of Transportation Act of 1964 as well as more recent programs that provide funding for the preservation and protection of transportation-related historic resources and cultural sites through Enhancements Program funding under the aegis of the Department of Transportation. Get Specifics »
Federal law compels states to set aside approximately 10% of their federal-aid highway allocation for new and non-traditional activities that enhance the community benefits of transportation investments
Half of the twelve eligible Transportation Enhancement activities relate to historic preservation: preservation of transportation-related historic and cultural resources, transportation museums, visitor centers, rail depots and other historic transportation facilities, historic Main Street revitalizations, and the purchase of historic sites.
What is Section 4(f)?
"Section 4(f)" doesn't sound important—but it is the strongest federal preservation law on the books, and its loss would be a devastating blow to efforts to protect America's heritage.
Part of the Department of Transportation Act adopted by Congress in 1966, Section 4(f) states that transportation projects must avoid historic sites unless there is "no feasible and prudent alternative" and requires "all possible planning to minimize harm" to historic places. This unequivocal "hands-off" directive has been invoked hundreds of times over the past 35 years to keep the nation's heritage from being bulldozed and blacktopped, as examples from around the country show. Read More »
Glossary of Terms & Acronyms
Wondering what "multimodal" means or still hazy on the precise definition of AASHTO? You shouldn't have to be a transportation insider to speak the language.
Check out this useful glossary of common transportation-related terms and acronyms.
Find Your State DOT
Referencing your state Department of Transportation (DOT) prior to embarking on a preservation and transportation endeavor is a significant initial step to success. Much information on streetscaping, transportation museum renovations, and other preservation projects can be found by browsing state DOT websites.
Find yours on the Federal Highway Administration's State Transportation Web Sites page.