Poole/Reason on Tx DOT
Sorry for the late kickoff post this week. Just a quick pass-along this morning from Bob Poole's latest Surface Transportation Innovations newsletter at Reason. Oddly, I got this excerpt out of their email newsletter, but it doesn't seem to be up on their web site yet. He has some interesting and favorable things to say about Texas' approach to solving mobility challenges:
Texas Wants Long-Term Concessions
I’ve said before that
You can get a nicely presented overview of the rationale for the whole program, called the Texas Transportation Challenge, by clicking on: www.txdot.state.tx.us/txdotnews/trans_challenges.pdf. There you will find that while roadway use is projected to grow by 214% over the next 25 years, highway capacity will increase only 6% with a business-as-usual approach. That’s because current transportation revenues (mostly state and federal fuel taxes) can do little more than keep pace with the need to maintain and rebuild the existing highways. To achieve an acceptable level of mobility by 2030,
And that’s what they intend to do via tolling and CDAs. The workshop included a detailed Powerpoint presentation (available on the txdotnews/cda_index.htm portion of the TxDOT site) that explains the overall program, lists current projects being considered for, or already moving forward as, CDAs, and gives highlights of high-profile projects like the first two Trans-Texas Corridor projects, TTC-35 and TTC-69. It also explains how TxDOT will assist private partners in making use of the federal TIFIA and PAB programs. And it emphasizes that TxDOT welcomes unsolicited proposals in addition to planning to issue many RFPs for projects it has identified.
There’s no question that states and urban areas are in competition as good places to live and do business. Some, like