AZ launches 5-year infrastructure construction program
State officials said the program, which includes almost $500 million for Interstate 10–related projects alone, aims to improve transportation capacity along major commerce routes.
- The existing program includes the $1.9 billion Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway project, which ADOT recently reported will be completed three years ahead of schedule. Loop 202 is the first public-private partnership highway project in Arizona history.
Several states have recently embarked on construction programs intended to expedite commuter traffic, make roads safer and accommodate increased commerce-related travel on highway systems. Eliminating highway congestion is key to efficient trade and rational security, according to the Trump administration, which identified 50 such projects earlier this year.
President Donald Trump has made it clear that those projects will be first in line for federal funding and that regional and local systems might have to fend for themselves, although he did provide for local and rural grants in his 2018 budget request.
Nevertheless, states are coughing up billions to ensure their residents can get around as quickly and as efficiently as possible.
Virginia officials recently authorized an $18.6 billion, six-year transportation improvement program that will fund more than 3,600 projects throughout the state. Of that figure, the Virginia Commonwealth Transportation Board approved $15.2 billion for highway construction and $2.6 billion for public transportation, with $817 million set aside for rail projects.
Indiana also recently approved a $5 billion plan to update and repair its state infrastructure assets. The plan is to be funded by a hike in the state gas tax, motorist fees and toll collection targeting out-of-state drivers.
California is tackling an estimated $130 billion backlog of infrastructure repairs through a $52 billion spending program, arguably the biggest state-led transportation upgrade initiative yet. State lawmakers agreed to a 12-cents-per-gallon gas tax increase, as well as higher vehicle fees, to help fund the program.
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