Tennessee governor unveils new plan for improving rural and urban transportation
New infrastructure plan aims to accommodate Tennessee’s population, traffic increase
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - On Thursday, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee unveiled a new plan for improving the state’s infrastructure.
His administration’s strategic infrastructure plan is geared toward accommodating Tennessee’s record growth, as well as addressing traffic congestion and meeting transportation needs across rural and urban communities.
In the coming weeks, the Lee administration will introduce the Transportation Modernization Act of 2023.
Tennesseans are invited to view the full presentation here.
According to data from the Tennessee State Data Center, Tennessee’s population increased by 8.2%, or by 564,735 people, between 2010 and 2020. Comparatively, Arkansas’ population increased by 3.2% and Mississippi’s decreased by -0.2%.
Countrywide, the population increased by an average of 6.4%.
“As Tennessee continues to experience tremendous growth, we have an obligation to make strategic transportation investments that prepare our state for continued success - without raising taxes or going into debt,” said Lee. “Our infrastructure plan will prepare Tennessee communities, both rural and urban, for increased economic advantages and improved mobility in the years ahead. I look forward to partnering with members of the General Assembly to solve transportation challenges.”
According to the Lee administration, the plan will ensure the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT), under the leadership of Commissioner Butch Eley, has the resources needed to solve the state’s current and future mobility changes.
Proposed solutions include:
- Seeking the use of public-private partnerships to allow private investment in new urban roadway infrastructure, which will allow the state to reserve funds for more rural infrastructure priorities
- The plan for public-private partnerships will include exploring Choice Lanes, which are additional, optional lanes funded in partnership with the private sector on urban Tennessee interstates to decrease congestion and increase economic impact across the state
- Expanding the alternative delivery model to save taxpayer dollars and deliver road projects more quickly
Additional information about the “Build with Us” plan can be found here.
“Tennessee is facing a critical juncture when it comes to transportation and mobility,” said Commissioner Eley. “Our infrastructure investments will ensure that TDOT has the tools needed to quickly deliver and maintain quality roads so that Tennesseans and commerce can move across our state, all while saving taxpayer dollars.”
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