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Coalition urges Congress to adopt ITS solutions in Transportation Bill

A coalition of transportation and technology leaders in the USA is calling on Congress to focus Federal funding in the Surface Transportation Authorization Bill on the deployment of smart technologies and innovative solutions in order to create a performance-driven, intermodal transportation system that is safer, cleaner, more efficient, and more financially sustainable for communities, businesses and the traveling public.

Highlights of the coalition’s proposal include recommendations that Congress:
Incentivize Performance Improvements by linking transportation funding to specific targets in areas such as traffic-related fatalities, traffic congestion, and travel times. The USDOT should incentivize state and local agencies to achieve or exceed national goals, and should create a National Scorecard to publish data on performance results and improvements.
Put Smart Technologies to Work by providing public agencies and private sector partners with the tools to manage and improve the performance of their intermodal transportation systems. The coalition is supporting a proposal by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials to allocate US$3 billion per year for an Operations and Management program, and is urging Congress to dedicate at least US$1 billion of this amount for deployment and integration of ITS.
Create Smart Towns and City Streets in which cars help prevent crashes, where rush hour is a thing of the past, and where vehicles have wireless connectivity to an infinite range of traveler services from real-time traffic, transit and parking information to collision avoidance systems. As a first step in reaching this goal, the bill should create a competitive selection process to designate several ‘smart’ cities, towns, and communities to serve as model deployment sites for wireless safety, mobility and environmental solutions;
Advance Next Generation Innovations by providing US$250 million annually for the Federal ITS research program in order to advance innovations in areas such as vehicle and intersection collision avoidance, congestion management, environmental solutions, emergency response, innovative financing, and other ITS-enabled solutions.
 

May 15, 2009

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