Thursday, December 4

The infrastructure we want

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) has set up a website,, to collect public comments about federal transportation funding for the incoming Obama administration. As Streetsblog reports, their own proposal is par for the course for a highway lobbiest group - heavy on roads, light on everything else.

However, reading through the comments presents an entirely different picture. I've picked out a few snippets that seem representative to me (take a look yourself if you think I'm cherry-picking):

"That was $20 a barrel thinking. We need to innovate ways to get from point A to point B at $200 barrel oil."

"Support for mass transit and non-motorized transportation (bike/pedestrian) need to be a priority in transportation"

"bridges and overpasses need special attention for repair and renovation"

"More people bicycling would lead to a healthier population, less air pollution, fewer CO2 emissions, less congestion, and less dependence on foreign oil. However, we need complete streets that can be used by everyone, including bicyclists."

"We need places where we can walk to basic stuff of life."

"We need trains! Real, efficient, fast trains."

"Please, please raise the gas tax."

After reading upwards of 100 comments, I found only one person in favor of funding new roads. And this person identified himself/herself as a transportation planner for a State DOT. hmmm.

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