I will chime in on one of the original questions asked: Does ACA have some kind of formula for making their routes?
As John mentioned, we consider many factors when choosing a route. There is no specific "A+B= awesome route" formula but we do look at information such as road condition (shoulders, rumble strips, etc.), traffic counts, local input, service availability, and for historically-based routes such as the Underground Railroad and Bicycle Route 66, historic features. It is a balancing act for sure. And every cyclist has different preferences so we're never going to please everyone with every decision. We evaluate on a route by route basis and consider feedback about current routes making changes as appropriate or possible.