FHWA awards more than $15 million to seven projects seeking to advance highway, bridge funding methods

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Oregon DOT Project
The Federal Highway Administration has awarded grants for seven projects designed to find new ways to fund highway and bridge projects. (Courtesy: Oregon Department of Transportation)

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) on July 9 awarded $15.1 million in Surface Transportation System Funding Alternatives (STSFA) grants to seven projects in five states to explore new ways to fund highway and bridge projects. The program’s goal is to test innovative ways to supplement the federal gas tax and provide long-term support for the Highway Trust Fund.

“These seven pilot projects will help provide valuable insight into potential new sources of revenue to support highway and bridge improvements nationwide,” said Federal Highway Administrator Nicole Nason.

The STSFA grants will fund projects that test the design, implementation and acceptance of user-based alternative revenue tools, such as a mileage-based fee. FHWA selected proposals from five states: Delaware (representing the I-95 Corridor Coalition), Oregon (two project awards with one representing the Western Road User Charge Consortium), Utah (two projects), Washington and Wyoming.

The Delaware Department of Transportation (I-95 Coalition Corridor) will receive $3.35 million to address mileage-based user fee (MBUF) barriers through expanded and enhanced pilot deployments within the I-95 Corridor Coalition states.

The Oregon Department of Transportation will receive $5 million for road usage charging in a connected vehicle ecosystem; the Oregon DOT (Western Road User Charge Consortium: Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Hawaii, Montana, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, Utah and Washington) will receive $250,000 for road usage charge and blockchain.

The Utah Department of Transportation will receive $395,000 for integration of road user charges and express lanes tolling and another $350,000 for road usage charge local overlay.

The Washington Department of Transportation-Washington State Transportation Commission will receive $5.5 million for the Forward Drive Washington road-usage-charge demonstration project.

The Wyoming Department of Transportation will receive $250,000 for the Wyoming Truck Mileage User Fee Pilot program.

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