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Infra Views

Intergovernmental Challenges in Surface Transportation Funding

Wednesday, October 1st, 2014
All Levels of Government Fund Highways and Transit

THE PEW CHARITABLE TRUSTS
This analysis examines the role that each level of government plays in paying for highway and transit infrastructure (referred to here as “surface transportation” or “transportation”), the key problems facing this multilayered system of funding, and their causes. In addition, it identifies central principles that policymakers need to consider as they weigh options and consider solutions.

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Advantage Local: Why Local Energy Ownership Matters

Monday, September 29th, 2014
Local Ownership Means More Jobs & More Local Economic Impact

INSTITUTE FOR LOCAL SELF-RELIANCE

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Public Private Partnerships: Balancing the needs of the public and private sectors to finance the nation’s infrastructure

Friday, September 26th, 2014
Figure 1: PPPs Worldwide, Nominal Cost (in Billions), 1985-2011

HOUSE TRANSPORTATION & INFRASTRUCTURE COMMITTEE
Around the world, P3s play a significant role in the development and delivery of transportation and infrastructure projects. Internationally, P3s have had a mixed record of success and failure. The Panel found that successful P3s have several common elements, including leveraging the strengths of the public and private sectors, appropriate risk transfer, transparent and flexible contracts, and alignment of policy goals…Unlike most other countries, the United States possesses a robust municipal bond market of approximately $3.7 trillion, of which a significant portion is for infrastructure financing. The Panel found that this is one major reason why the U.S. P3 market has not grown as quickly as in other countries (which do not offer tax-exempt municipal bonds) and why the potential for P3s in the United States is limited.

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Catching Up: Greater Focus Needed to Achieve a More Competitive Infrastructure

Thursday, September 25th, 2014
Figure E-1: Real Public Infrastructure Expenditures, Average Annual Percentage Growth

NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF MANUFACTURERS
Modern economic growth and development depends on high-quality infrastructure. There is no getting around it. However, what, exactly, does that involve? Infrastructure spans a wide range of public and private assets, including highways and bridges, airports, ports and inland waterways, electricity plants and transmission lines, information and telecommunication networks and water and sewage facilities. Such assets are indispensable for facilitating production across various industries—not least of which include agriculture, energy, mining and, in particular, manufacturing. The ability to safely and efficiently move goods from a manufacturing facility to a customer located far away is crucial to the industry’s long-term health and global competitiveness. In other capital-intensive industries, such as telecommunications and electricity distribution, infrastructure plays an equally important role. Beyond the manufacturing industry, basic infrastructure also underlies the daily occupational and recreational activities of U.S. households. Our energy, mobility, information and travel capabilities all depend on safe, accessible and reliable infrastructure.

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Pennsylvania: Replacing 558 Bridges in 4 Years

Wednesday, September 24th, 2014
Map of Final Bridges - P3 RBR Bridges

PENNSYLVANIA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
With the P3 approach, we can replace hundreds of these bridges more quickly, save money and minimize the impact on the traveling public. SD bridges are not unsafe but pose a serious problem that jeopardizes our ability to grow economically and create jobs. This initiative, in conjunction with Pennsylvania’s new comprehensive transportation funding law that Corbett signed on Nov. 25, 2013, will bring much needed investment to the state’s bridges.

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California Transportation By The Numbers

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014
VOC, Congestion & Safety

TRIP
With a current unemployment rate of 7.4 percent and with the state’s population continuing to grow, California must improve its system of roads, highways and bridges to foster economic growth and keep businesses in the state. In addition to economic growth, transportation improvements are needed to ensure safe, reliable mobility and quality of life for all Californians. Meeting California’s need to modernize and maintain its system of roads, highways and bridges will require a significant boost in local, state and federal funding.

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Highway Boondoggles: Wasted Money and America’s Transportation Future

Monday, September 22nd, 2014
Figure ES-2. Vehicle-Miles Traveled per Capita in the United States, 1946-2013

U.S. PIRG EDUCATION FUND
Americans drive no more in total now than we did in 2005, and no more on average than we did at the end of Bill Clinton’s first term as president. The recent stagnation in driving comes on the heels of a six decade-long Driving Boom that saw steady, rapid increases in driving and congestion across the United States, along with the investment of more than $1 trillion of public money in highways…But even though the Driving Boom is now over, state and federal governments continue to pour vast sums of money into the construction of new highways and expansion of old ones—at the expense of urgent needs such as road and bridge repairs, improvements in public transportation and other transportation priorities.

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21st Annual Report on the Performance of State Highway Systems

Friday, September 19th, 2014
Table ES1: Performance of State-Owned Highways, 2009–2012

REASON FOUNDATION
Reason Foundation’s 21st Annual Highway Report tracks the performance of the 50 state-owned highway systems from 1984 to 2012. Each state’s overall rating consists of 11 category rankings. The rankingsinclude highway expenditures, Interstate and rural primary road pavement conditions, bridge conditions, urban Interstate/freeway congestion, fatality rates and narrow rural arterial lanes. The study is based on spending and performance data submitted by the state highway agencies to the federal government. It also reviews changes in highway performance since 2009, the prior report’s focus.

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A Global High Shift Scenario: Impacts And Potential For More Public Transport, Walking, And Cycling With Lower Car Use

Thursday, September 18th, 2014
Figure 7: Total Urban Passenger Travel for Select Countries/Regions

INSTITUTE FOR TRANSPORTATION & DEVELOPMENT POLICY
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, DAVIS
This report is the first study to examine how major changes in urban transport investments worldwide would affect urban passenger transport emissions as well as mobility by different income groups. It starts with the most recent United Nations urban population forecasts and the most recent model framework and forecasts used by the International Energy Agency (IEA) for global mobility modeling. The study extends these with new research on the extent of various urban passenger transport systems in cities across the world, as well as new estimates of the extent of mobility by non-motorized transport and low power e-bikes.

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Renewable Energy in the Western States

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014
ELECTRICITY GENERATION BY SOURCE, 2013

AMERICAN COUNCIL ON RENEWABLE ENERGY
With the growing prominence of renewable energy in the western power, heat, and transportation sectors, states are implementing and exploring technology and policy options to effectively manage its production and use. Renewable energy is now responsible for over 20% of electricity generation in six western states, and the region saw the addition of nearly 4 GW of new renewable energy capacity in 2013 alone – which is more than two thirds of total 2013 U.S. capacity additions.

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