A once-in-a-generation US$1.5 trillion investment in US infrastructure came a step closer yesterday (1 July 2020) as the Moving Forward Act was approved by the House of Representatives.
As one of the leading representatives of the US transportation industry ITS America’s president and CEO Shailen Bhatt praised the smooth passage of the bill, and looked forward to the coming transformation of US life that could take place, thanks to the funds it will make available.
Bhatt and ITS America issued a statement, which reads, in full: “In passing the Moving Forward Act today, the House of Representatives made great strides toward creating a safer, greener, and smarter transportation system. First and foremost, the bill includes important emergency assistance to state and local transportation agencies and transit providers, which will help save jobs and keep critical transportation projects moving forward.
“The Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITS America) has long advocated for more investment in technologies that will reduce fatalities, congestion, and emissions, and this bill includes provisions that would move the United States closer to accomplishing these goals.
“For the first time, Vehicle-to-Pedestrian (V2P) technologies would be eligible for federal funding. Before a slight decrease in 2019, crashes that result in serious injury or death of pedestrians and bicyclists were on the rise. If this bill becomes law, it will pave the way for wide-scale deployment of technologies that would allow drivers to ‘see through’ other vehicles and around corners.
“In another first, it integrates Mobility on Demand (MOD) activities with transit and makes them eligible for federal funds, which would enhance access to mobility services for people across the country.
“The bill would help bring about a cleaner transportation future by providing federal funding for alternative vehicle charging infrastructure and addressing ‘range anxiety’ by allowing for EV charging on rights of way on the Interstate System.
“ITS America and our members have worked hard for these wins. We stood up the Mobility on Demand Alliance to advocate for MOD activities in reauthorization, have repeatedly said connected vehicle technology is the best tool in our toolbox to save lives, and have been a leader in calling for a cleaner and more sustainable transportation system.
“We look forward to working with Congress as this process continues. As transportation technologies continue to advance and become an increasingly valuable tool for decision-makers and transform how we get around, it is critical to provide federal funding for the rapid deployment of intelligent transportation technologies across the country.