Record-Breaking Miles Traveled Data Reinforces Funding Need
FAST Act Came at Right Time to Help Meet America’s Infrastructure Demands
WASHINGTON, D.C. / FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – January 28, 2016
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WASHINGTON, D.C.—New government data showing likely record-breaking vehicle travel on America’s roads in 2015 reaffirms growing demands on our nation’s transportation infrastructure and the need for funds provided through the recently passed “Fixing America’s Surface Transportation” (FAST) Act, according to leaders of the Americans for Transportation Mobility (ATM) Coalition.
Recently released figures by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) reveal that U.S. driving reached 2.88 trillion miles by the end of November – and more than 253 billion miles in November alone, making it likely that 2015 will set a new historic record for most miles traveled on the nation’s roads. The data also confirms increasing business and consumer vehicle travel trends reported in last year’s USDOT “Beyond Traffic” projections.
“Before the FAST Act was passed, we already knew there was a tremendous need for adequate transportation funding to both help meet business, consumer and community demands and provide certainty to state and local officials charged with maintaining and building infrastructure,” said Ed Mortimer, executive director of the ATM Coalition and executive director of Transportation Infrastructure for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which leads the ATM Coalition. “This data shows that passage of the FAST Act could not have come at a better time.”
The ATM Coalition supported passage of the FAST Act, a $305 billion bill that extended federal transportation funding for five years with federal gas tax revenue at the current level and a package of offsets from other areas of the federal budget. The FAST Act also provided greater flexibility for state and local governments in spending on necessary projects and an expanded focus on transportation projects that are national or regional in scope.
“Down the road, the country needs a dedicated, sustainable funding source to meet the nation’s tremendous and still growing transportation needs, as evidenced by these latest U.S. DOT numbers,” said Mortimer. “For the shorter-term though, the FAST Act will allow states and cities to plan and carry out critical transportation projects that can improve their mobility and economies.”
“With America’s federal transportation program back on track, we look forward to watching FAST Act dollars turn into jobs that create necessary roads, bridges, safety improvements and public transit projects,” continued Mortimer.
The Americans for Transportation Mobility Coalition is a collaborative effort by business, labor, transportation stakeholders and concerned citizens to advocate for improved and increased federal investment in the nation’s aging and overburdened transportation system. The coalition believes the deterioration of the nation’s transportation system undermines the economy, jeopardizes our safety, threatens our quality of life, and harms the environment.