America’s aging roads and bridges are in increasingly dire need of repair. Tens of thousands of people die on the roads each year and more are sickened or die from air pollution caused by vehicles. Tens of millions of Americans lack access to quality public transit or safe places to walk or bike, leaving them fully dependent on cars or – for those who cannot afford a car or are physically unable to drive – entirely shut off from critical services and opportunities.
America was already faced with the need to make critical transportation investments. And then COVID-19 hit, upending travel patterns and undercutting the traditional sources of government transportation revenue.
Now is no time to fritter away scarce public resources on wasteful boondoggle projects.
Yet across the country, state and local governments continue to move forward with tens of billions of dollars’ worth of new and expanded highways that do little to address real transportation challenges, while diverting scarce funding from much-needed infrastructure repairs and key, future-oriented transportation priorities. Highway Boondoggles 6 finds seven new budget-eating highway projects slated to cost a total of $26 billion that will harm communities and the environment, while likely failing to achieve meaningful transportation goals.
Highway expansions are expensive and saddle states with debt.