New transportation program could put additional $2.1 billion in PA roads over ten year period

New transportation program could put additional $2.1 billion in PA roads over ten year period

Author: Jason Gottesman/Wednesday, March 1, 2017/Categories: News and Views

The Wolf administration announced Tuesday the creation of the Pennsylvania Road Maintenance and Preservation (Road MaP) program within the Department of Transportation, which it said is set up to invest $2.1 billion in Pennsylvania roadway infrastructure over the next ten years.


“We’ve made significant progress on our roadway and bridge needs and the Road MaP program will amplify our efforts statewide,” said Gov. Tom Wolf in a statement announcing the program. “We’re bringing an even bigger focus to our interstates and to the lower-volume roads where many Pennsylvanians live and work.”


According to the administration, the funding will largely come from caps put on transfers to the Pennsylvania State Police from the Motor License Fund and additional savings that will come from the governor’s proposed $25 per person fee for municipalities relying on State Police coverage.


Of the new investment dollars, $500 million will be allocated to an Interstate preservation and reconstruction program, bringing that total program, begun in 2016, to $1 billion over the next 10 years. Another $600 million will go toward rehabilitation and reconstruction needs identified through the department’s district and regional planning efforts.


The program will also focus on being smart about how lower-volume roads are repaired and maintained by instituting a reinvigorated initiative to use recycled asphalt to preserve and upgrade the condition of these roads, something the administration called an "environmentally conscious method" that does not require the purchase of new material.


Already implemented in several counties, the use of recycled material has provided savings in the millions of dollars.


Ultimately, the aim of the program will be to provide funding for projects that address the large needs of the roads maintained by PennDOT with a particular focus on Interstate-system repair.


“We’re well aware that many Pennsylvanians are dealing with very old roads that sorely need repairs, and Road MaP is one way that we’re going to fix our connections within communities and to other states,” PennDOT Sec. Leslie Richards said.


“With this initiative we’re telling our customers that we’re using these new investments to better maintain and preserve our massive roadway system – the fifth-largest in the country.”