14 US interstates make the cut for major improvements

WASHINGTON — Plans to reduce traffic tie-ups on several of the busiest American highways are one step closer to becoming a reality as a short list of interstate corridors was announced last week by U.S. Secretary of Transportation Mary E. Peters.

New highway projects include expanded highway
capacity, truck-only lanes, and safety initiatives.

She said the Corridors of the Future effort is a progressive approach that includes transportation planning across state lines in ways that reduce congestion and preserve the efficient flow of goods and commerce across America. She went on to caution that “if we don’t act today, our economy will be facing a standstill in the future.”

The DOT is advancing 14 of 38 proposals located on eight major transportation corridors including: I-95 between Florida and Maine; I-15 in Southern California and Nevada; I-80/94 and I-90 linking Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan; I-5 in California, Washington and Oregon; I-70 from Missouri to Ohio; I-69 from Texas to Michigan; I-80 in Nevada and California; and I-10 from California to Florida.

The proposals currently include various combinations of expanded highway capacity, truck-only lanes, increased freight and passenger rail development, and extensive use of innovative technologies to keep traffic moving and improve overall safety.

The projects were selected based on the potential of each to reduce congestion on the eight corridors of national and regional significance using innovative financing and project delivery techniques. Peters said the department will select up to five Corridors of the Future in the summer of 2007.

The Corridors of the Future program is one element of DOT’s six-point National Strategy to Reduce Congestion on America’s Transportation Network launched in May 2006.

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