Fed Study Offers Ideas for Transportation Solutions. Discuss.

Even though the Department of Transportation did not intend for its “Beyond Traffic 2045” study to be an action plan for solving the challenges facing the United States with its transportation system, the study does offer a few proposed solutions for discussion.

Below are a few of the ideas floated by the report. As Saturday Night Live comedian Mike Myers’ character “Linda Richman” was fond of saying – Discuss:

  • Strategies to address truck parking along freight corridors and in urban areas can improve safety and help to relieve local congestion;
  • Increase infrastructure capacity: build new roads, bridges, and other facilities; maintain existing facilities more effectively; use existing facilities more effectively by implementing better designs and technologies; or use some combination of these methods;
  • Encourage innovative strategies to address first- and last-mile freight issues;
  • A portion of federal fuel taxes could be dedicated to freight issues; however, fuel-tax revenues have failed to keep up with inflation and may not represent a sustainable source of revenues;
  • Alternatively, federal freight-related taxes based on freight waybills or freight ton-miles, or taxes on imported or exported goods, could be used to raise revenue to address freight bottleneck issues;
  • Strategies could include developing strategically located distribution centers, intermodal centers, and “freight villages” to facilitate efficient movement of goods into and out of urban areas. For example, distribution centers on the edges of urban areas could be used to encourage the consolidation of deliveries into dense commercial and residential areas, making possible the use of smaller, quieter and more energy-efficient trucks.