News

PennDOT Ends 2018 with $2.5 billion in Contract Lettings

January 9, 2019

PennDOT finished the 2018 calendar year with over $176 million in project lettings in December according to numbers compiled by the Associated Pennsylvania Constructors (APC).  As a result, PennDOT, finished the year with just over $2.519 billion in project lettings.  At the end of 2017, PennDOT bid a total of $2.578 billion in projects.  PennDOT forecasted the 2018 letting program to be $2.5 billion but they anticipate a drop to $2.2 billion for 2019.

As in year’s past, PHIA will continue to track contract lettings on a monthly basis.

To view the full December letting report and year comparisons, click the link below.

December Letting Report* (PDF)

 

*The report lists the total contracts awarded at each letting date, a comparison to the same period in the previous calendar year, and letting adjustments made since the previous month. PHIA staff will track PennDOT lettings throughout the year and provide monthly update.

News

Coalition to develop regional transportation carbon-reduction policy

December 21, 2018

Pennsylvania is among a coalition of nine states and the District of Columbia that will participate in developing a regional low-carbon transportation policy proposal to cap and reduce carbon emissions from transportation fuels.

Called the Transportation & Climate Initiative, its goals are to develop a cleaner transportation system that reduces congestion, promotes walking and bicycling, encourages greater use of public transportation, improves air quality and helps communities become more resilient to extreme weather events.

According to TCI, emissions from transportation account for the largest portion of the region’s carbon pollution, and a recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change concluded that ambitious reductions are needed within the next decade to avoid dangerous impacts to public health, infrastructure and the environment.

The resulting “cap-and-trade” system could look much like the one in California, which began including transportation in its emission reduction program in 2015. That state’s fuel wholesalers are required to purchase emission permits, and the cost is rolled into fuel prices at the pump. The market encourages lower consumption as prices rise. Read more

Featured

Wolf administration begins search for public transit solution

December 4, 2018

Faced with the expiration of a $400 million subsidy from the Turnpike for public transportation, the Wolf administration is beginning to set the stage for replacing that revenue.

PennDOT Secretary Leslie Richards, at the Associated Pennsylvania Constructors Fall Conference last month, outlined the Commonwealth’s transportation funding needs, asserting that the $3.5 billion annual funding gap calculated in 2010 will have more than doubled by 2020 unless policymakers act. She said public transportation funding is the Commonwealth’s most pressing transportation need.

Then, last week, Governor Wolf said he supports changing the transportation funding method to relieve the burden on the Turnpike.

The combination of two legislative measures – one in 2007 and the other in 2013 – provided for a $450 million subsidy to public transportation and resulted in toll increases every year. The Turnpike has greatly increased its debt.

“I think there’s bipartisan support for actually taking a look at that, because I think we all recognize that’s unsustainable,” the governor said. “People using the turnpike are paying too much. The turnpike really is driving business away.”

Under the funding arrangement, $400 million of the subsidy will disappear by 2023 at the latest.  A lawsuit filed by an independent truckers’ organization could hasten the subsidy’s demise.

“Nobody has come up with a specific solution yet, and it won’t be easy,” said PHIA Managing Director Jason Wagner. “It’s encouraging to see the administration launch the process.”

News

PennDOT’s November Lettings Top $150 Million

November 30, 2018

PennDOT continued its 2018 construction letting season by issuing over $150.4 million in projects during the month of November, bringing the year-to-date total to just over $2.3 billion according to numbers compiled by the Associated Pennsylvania Constructors (APC).  PennDOT finished 2017 with just over $2.578 billion in project lettings.  PennDOT forecasted the 2017 letting program to be $2.4 billion and they anticipate the same for 2018.

As in year’s past, PHIA will continue to track contract lettings on a monthly basis.

To view the full November’s letting report and year comparisons, click the link below.

November Letting Report* (PDF)

*The report lists the total contracts awarded at each letting date, a comparison to the same period in the previous calendar year, and letting adjustments made since the previous month. PHIA staff will track PennDOT lettings throughout the year and provide monthly update.

 

News

The human side of work zone safety

October 29, 2018

As you probably know, Gov. Tom Wolf has signed into law an automated speed enforcement measure that we believe will help protect highway construction workers. While the bill passed by wide margins in both chambers of the General Assembly, it took sustained efforts by advocates over parts of two legislative sessions to complete the process.

A large measure of credit goes to those who took the time and made the effort to apprise their legislators of the importance of the bill. We also want to recognize APC members Stacy and Jay Chatley, of Established Traffic Control, whose tragedy 11 years ago helped to frame the human side of the issue.

On Nov. 13, 2007, Jay Chatley was setting up a construction zone on Route 80 in Warren County. He was walking on the shoulder when a speeding driver veered out of control, starting a chain reaction that caused a mobile traffic sign to strike him. He was rushed to a hospital with severe head injuries. Although he survived the crash, he suffered permanent injuries that require around-the-clock care.

In April, Stacy and Jay came to Harrisburg to tell their story in conjunction with National Work Zone Awareness Week. APC produced a video of the news conference and distributed it to legislators and the public.  While there were many factors that led to passage of the automated speed enforcement act, Stacy and Jay’s willingness to share their story deserves special recognition.