Report Identifies 12 'Highway Boondoggles'

A new report by U.S. PIRG and the Frontier Group identifies the highway projects most likely to break the transportation funding bank.

1 minute read

January 19, 2016, 2:00 PM PST

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell

U.S. PIRG and the Frontier Group have released the second "Highway Boondoggles" report, which makes the case that highway expansion projects are a waste of transportation funding in an era of critical funding needs.

The report's Executive Summary is available online, along with a .pdf of the full report. The report identifies 12 proposed highway projects, "slated to cost at least $24 billion," as evidence of the need for a "fresh approach" to transportation funding. Projects from Connecticut, Florida, Texas, California, Colorado, North Carolina, Washington, Iowa, New Mexico, Ohio, and Pennsylvania make the list.

The report also looks back, at examples of highway expansion projects that failed to deliver any congestion relief (the 1-405 in Los Angeles and the Katy Freeway in Houston being the most famous examples) and at examples of states and local jurisdictions thinking twice before proceeding with expansion projects (with the Illiana Expressway being the most famous example).

The Executive Summary concludes by previewing the policy recommendations included in the report, such as adopting fix-it-first policies and adopting the newest forecasting and systems models.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016 in Frontier Group

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