Some States Still Spending Big on Roads and Highways

Despite ongoing news reports of a down economy, at least two states pledged last month to spend big in FY’ 2012 to upgrade their infrastructure including roads, highways and mass-transit systems.
"…rail and transit projects throughout Virginia will benefit from the increased funding provided this year."
California Transportation Commission (CTC) recently announced it has allocated $825 million in new funding for upcoming infrastructure projects.  The expense is being touted as a way to create jobs and improve transportation for Californians.  Part of the funding is allocated specifically for projects using a design-build project management system that offers a change from the traditional construction projects to create a single point of responsibility and reduce risk and cost.  This process is currently being utilized in 32 other states, and many other countries. The State Highway 99 Chowchilla Rehabilitation Project, California’s first design-build project was awarded in Fresno on June 28th, 2011.  The project will repair nearly four miles of Highway 99 in both directions in Chowchilla from the South Madera Overcrossing to the Avenue 16 Overcrossing. Existing guardrail, lights, signs, and drainage systems within the project limits will also be upgraded or repaired, as needed.  By overlapping the design and construction phases of the project, they estimate it will be finished a year ahead of schedule and save tax payers money. Transportation improvements aren’t just set for the west coast, Virginia is also spending big on transportation in the next few years.  Recently Virginia governor, Bob McDonnell, announced a $3 billion construction increase focused on the Six-Year Improvement Program (SYIP). According to the June 15th release, “Projects include support of improvements to Norfolk Southern infrastructure along the I-81 Crescent Corridor, construction of the Kilby Support Yard, completion and operation of the Tide light rail system, evaluation of bus rapid transit in Richmond, as well as bus replacements and new rail cars for transit operators throughout the Commonwealth.” With two heavy hitting states increasing budgets for FY12 and beyond, the question isn’t what states are going to be next but how long will it take to get them on the bandwagon? Related Articles: Re-envisioning a Historic U.S. Roadway with Safety, the Environment and the Public in Mind Case Study: Need to Improve your City Infrastructure on a Budget with Limited Resources and Still Save $30,000?