APC to seek work zone safety solution
It probably comes as no surprise that speeding through work zones is the top safety concern among highway construction workers. Add to that the increased speed limits on the Turnpike and on sections of some Interstate Highways,… [read more]
Governor Corbett Announces Updated 12-Year Transportation Program
The State Transportation Commission today updated Pennsylvania’s 12-Year Transportation Program with a 50 percent boost in transportation spending directly attributable to passage of Act 89 last fall. The new plan anticipates… [read more]
Missouri ballot defeat reinforces lessons learned in PA
We’re disappointed to see any transportation funding initiative go down to defeat, but reasons behind the 59-41 percent thrashing this week of a Missouri ballot initiative that would have raised the state sales tax by three-quarters… [read more]
2014 Transportation Conference a Success
PHIA members know that we don’t hand out our Advocate of the Year awards to just anyone. In fact, it’s not unusual for us to skip the award some years. This year, however, we honored not one, but two transportation advocates,… [read more]
Corbett unveils “Decade of Investment” for transportation
Gov. Tom Corbett announced today that PennDOT will invest $2.1 billion in bridge and highway work this year, about $600 million more than would have been available without passage of the Transportation Funding Act last fall. At… [read more]
NEWS & UPDATES
Correspondent Steve Croft selected Pittsburgh and its bridges as a backdrop in a segment that aired on Sunday. He also traveled to Philadelphia to interview former Gov. Ed Rendell on what could have been a disaster with an Interstate 95 bridge, were it not for the quest for a sausage sandwich.
“Although Pennsylvania has earned a reputation for having considerable transportation system problems, we’re now better off than nearly any other state following the passage of Act 89 a year ago,” said PHIA Managing Director Jason Wagner. “That doesn’t mean our problem is solved, and the 60 Minutes segment pointed out that the lack of consensus at the federal level continues.”
The segment, along with two additional segments on the issue that were not aired, may be viewed here.
At the annual meeting of the Associated Pennsylvania Constructors (APC), PennDOT presented a recap of the 2014 highway construction program and made a projections for 2015. With a little over a month to go, PennDOT is expected to let approximately $2.6 billion in highway projects. The department has already eclipsed $2.4 billion as of Nov. 24. PennDOT anticipates maintaining its strong project output as a result of Act 89. They foreceasted 2015’s lettings to total at least $2.4 billion. The number could be pushed higher with project put out for bid via the Commonwealth’s Public-Private Partnership Law. While these numbers are projections, PennDOT has routinely met or exceeding these number in past year. To view the full 2015 construction forecast click HERE.
Act 89 continues to push construction lettings to significantly higher levels compared to last year. PennDOT had another strong month with nearly $300 million in projects being put out on the street during the month of October. This now brings the year-to-date total to just over $2.4 billion. At this same point in 2013, PennDOT only bid $1.465 billion in lettings. At this pace, PennDOT will far exceed its initial 2014 estimate of $2.2 billion.
With the recent enactment of the transportation funding bill there is reason to see this trend continue in 2015. Act 89, which will implement a $2.3 billion comprehensive transportation funding plan over the next five years, will result in PennDOT exceeding $2 billion in construction lettings in 2015. PennDOT finished 2013 with $1.6 billion in lettings. Read more
Among the solutions for improving highways is one that requires relatively little investment and no new construction. PennDOT Secretary Barry Schoch, appearing on Pennsylvania Newsmakers this week, outlined the department’s “Green Light Go” program and joined Associated Pennsylvania Constructors’ Bob Latham to provide a progress report on Act 89, the transportation funding measure that passed nearly one year ago.
“There’s no better low-cost improvement to reduce congestion and improve safety than to upgrade traffic signals,” the secretary said. To view the entire segment, click here.