Alliance of National Heritage Areas

Impact Facts

May 2010



  • 87,568,018 people visited heritage areas, and volunteers worked 690,440 hours in heritage areas.

  • Heritage areas awarded 341 grants totaling $4,138,286 which leveraged $45,558,565 in additional funds
  • Heritage areas awarded 90 grants to National Register eligible structures and contributed to 140 enhancement projects, 64 of which were "bricks and mortar" projects.
  • Heritage areas awarded 75 grants for recreation trails assisting in the creation of 62 new miles of trails and the enhancement of 144 trail projects.
  • Heritage areas have formalized relationships with 1,764 partners and 4,606 in formal relationships with partners.
  • Heritage areas and their partners managed 6,555 educational programs and 1,669,530 people participated in educational programs.




  • Utilizing a formula created by the US Department of Commerce that measures the dollars needed to create one job from heritage preservation/tourism funds in each state, NHAs have created 16,520 jobs in 32 states through the $171,163 484 federal investment.
  • 49 National Heritage Areas in 32 states
  • Designated by Congress through authorizing legislation
  • Innovative approaches to partnering have resulted in a 5:1 ratio of private to federal dollars
  • Projects and programs are locally designed, locally implemented and locally sustained
  • Does not impact private property rights or local land authorities




Across the country national heritage areas are creating partnerships that include government agencies, philanthropic organizations, educational institutions, non-profit groups and private citizens — all engaged toward the same goal of preserving, protecting and ultimately improving the economic vitality of communities. The National Heritage Area Program expands on traditional approaches to business development, tourism, education, conservation, preservation and recreation by creating networks committed to developing projects that are locally designed, locally implements and locally sustained. Over the past year, the work of the national heritage areas continued to strengthen local economies and promote a pride of place among residents, showing a remarkable return on the federal investment to the program.


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