The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) has been forced to cancel more than 137 road and bridge projects, totaling $740 million, due to the state’s inability to match available federal dollars.
MDOTs recently released five-year plan lists the statewide projects that have been cancelled, including road preservation projects, bridge preservation projects and new roads/capacity improvement projects. MDOT Director Kirk Steudle presented the list of projects to the House Transportation Committee on Tuesday.
“We are in a state of crisis when it comes to our transportation funding, and it is being felt in every community across the state,” said Mike Nystrom, vice president of government and public relations for the Michigan Infrastructure and Transportation Association (MITA) and co-chair of the Michigan Transportation Team (MTT). “These projects are vital to Michigan’s economic future. When roads are maintained, they attract new business. Economic and job growth will not happen in Michigan when MDOT is forced to cancel critical infrastructure projects.”
“This should be yet another wake-up call to our legislators that the time is now to Fix Michigan Roads,” Nystrom said. “If we fail to address this issue now, Michigan’s road and bridge funding will plummet dramatically in 2011, causing the state to return almost $600 million a year to Washington because of our inability to match federal aid.”
The Michigan legislature is currently exploring a package of bills that would increase road funding over the next five years in Michigan. The plan is expected to yield an additional $1.8 billion in new transportation revenue per year.
“We all need to tell our legislators: ‘No more excuses, Fix Michigan Roads now,’” Nystrom said.
Click here for the full list of Road Preservation Projects removed from the 2009-2013 five-year program.