When rural towns look for ideas to widen their economic base, tourism isn’t always the most obvious solution—especially during a pandemic.
But a new study by University of Georgia researchers offers a potential road map, connecting landscapes to preferences among motorcycle enthusiasts. By designating and marketing scenic byways, rural communities could appeal to a specific set of tourists who prefer small roads with no clear destination.
“It’s one of the first assessments of landscape preferences by motorcycle enthusiasts, and it’s also unique in its focus on managed landscapes in the Southeast,” said Krista Merry, a research professional at Warnell. Merry specializes in geographic information systems (GIS), and for the study she used information collected from landscapes in Jackson County, Florida.