North Carolina Governor Outlines 25-year Transportation Vision
“We must have a well-connected, well-maintained and well-funded transportation system in place for North Carolina to continue to thrive,” Secretary Tata said. “This vision will provide a roadmap for long-term strategic investment that ensures we are making the most of our limited resources and proactively addressing the ever-growing demands on our state’s transportation infrastructure over the next quarter century.”
This 25-year vision builds on the foundation established by the Strategic Transportation Investments law passed by the General Assembly and signed by Governor McCrory last summer. The law changes the way North Carolina funds and prioritizes major transportation projects, allowing the state to make the best possible use of its existing resources over a 10-year period.
While the new law is still in the implementation process, the N.C. Department of Transportation estimates that based on current data it will be able to fund more than twice the number of projects it could under the previous funding formula. The 25-year vision will take these efforts a step further to ensure that the state is maximizing its resources and fully leveraging its infrastructure over the longterm.
The vision does not include a list of specific projects, but rather provides high-level solutions for the state by laying out the future investments needed to help each region and North Carolina as a whole achieve their full potential.
The Coastal Solutions identified in the vision include:
- Sustainable beach nourishment;
- Improving highway connections;
- Replacing aging bridges;
- Stabilizing inlets; and
- Transforming North Carolina’s ports.
The Eastern Solutions include:
- Improving the highway connection to Hampton Roads;
- Strengthening military connections;
- Enhancing freight movement; and
- Improving I-95 connections.
The Central Solutions include:
- Relieving congestion for people and products;
- Expanding mass transit options;
- Enhancing access to inland ports;
- Improving connectivity to logistics hubs; and
- Supporting connections to privately developed megasites.
The Western Solutions include:
- Improving interstate connections;
- Strengthening highway connectivity from the mountains to the coast;
- Improving intrastate connections; and
- Enhancing industrial rail to support freight movement.
The Comprehensive Solutions identified to address transportation needs on a statewide level include:
- Strengthening the maintenance of our existing facilities;
- Improving our public transportation network including passenger rail;
- Expanding bicycle and pedestrian networks statewide; and
- Supporting greater broadband connectivity through existing right of way
In addition to identifying challenges and solutions, the vision also addresses the critical need for alternative funding solutions that will allow the state to close the growing gap between infrastructure needs and available funding, and invest in the strategic vision.
Alternative funding solutions identified in the vision include:
- Optimizing public-private partnerships;
- Reducing dependency on federal dollars;
- Taking advantage of historically low interest rates and
- Presenting targeted Revenue Recommendations to the General Assembly for action during the 2015 legislative session.
For more information and to view the Governor’s 25-Year Vision, visit www.ncvision25.gov.
– See more at: http://www.governor.state.nc.us/newsroom/press-releases/20140917/governor-mccrory-dot-secretary-tata-unveil-governor%E2%80%99s-25-year#sthash.AnBnL2ti.dpuf