News, updates, commentary and more from BikeAthens. BikeAthens is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization based in Athens, GA. BikeAthens promotes transportation and land-use policies that improve alternative modes of transportation, including pedestrian, cycling, and public transit options. The mission of our organization is to make alternative transportation a practical, convenient, and safe option for all citizens of Athens-Clarke County.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Comment on infrastructure bailout bill

Commentary on the developing story of the federal bailout bill from the blog of Hugh Bartling, a professor in DePaul’s Public Policy Studies program:
Congressional Democrats have just released some detailed numbers that will form the basis of economic stimulus legislation that Obama wants to sign into law by mid-February.

The devil, of course, is in the details. It appears that the $64 billion figure for “shovel ready” projects comes from the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. I am not familiar with their study, but some of the statements coming from AASHTO officials suggest that highway expansion and new roads are heavily weighted in this figure. As Transportation for America implies, maintenance money for bridges and highways should be prioritized over new road and highway construction. Using the stimulus package to exacerbate sprawl will simply cause further air quality and carbon emissions further down the line.

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