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Rockin’ Down the Highway

New Tool Highlights Benefits of Federal Highway Investment.

The federal aid highway program provides more than 50% of funding for state highway and bridge construction outlays, including construction, planning and design work, and right of way purchases.

Federal transportation investment has helped lay the foundation of our modern economy. More than half of this investment has been on the highways and bridges that are part of the National Highway System, a network that includes the Interstate Highway System and other major roads that connect our airports and intermodal facilities.

States leveraged $31 billion in federal funds to advance $66.5 billion in highway improvements during fiscal year (FY) 2018, according to an interactive tool that for the first time provides the American public and elected officials a clear look at how and where each state invests its transportation tax dollars.

Obtained through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, the American Road & Transportation Builders Association’s (ARTBA) analysis of Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) data displays information on more than 24,000 projects that moved forward in FY 2018.

“This dashboard,, helps shift the conversation about federal highway investments from apportionment tables and obligation charts to specific outcomes and benefits,” ARTBA President Dave Bauer said. “Such transparency and accountability will help the American people better understand the value they are getting from infrastructure investments.”

Nationally, nearly half of the projects – 45% – were for repair or reconstruction work on existing highways in FY 2018, according to “ARTBA’s Highway Dashboard: A 50-State Guide to the Benefits of Federal Investment.” Adding capacity (22% of funds), planning, design and construction engineering (14%), new construction (4%), planning, environmental, research and administration (2%), bike and pedestrian facilities (2%), debt service (2%) and utilities (1%), are among the other featured categories.

The dashboard allows users to visualize how each state deployed federal funds in a given year and features the top projects dating back to 1950.

The ARTBA Highway Dashboard was compiled by the association’s chief economist, Dr. Alison Premo Black.

How States Use Their Federal Highway Funds