When it comes to battling traffic congestion, the U.S. government is seeking all the help it can get. The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) is now urging state and city transportation officials to respond to its request for proposals to partner with it to fight road congestion in and around the nation's most congested cities.
Through the Urban Partnership Agreement, the DOT would provide qualified states and metropolitan areas, to be known as "Urban Partners," with grants, loans, credit support, regula Urban Partners would be real-time travel and tory relief and technical assistance to test advanced technologies designed to reduce traffic congestion, such as ramp metering information sys tems. In return, the expected to research, develop and showcase strategies believed to be effective (on a combined basis) in reducing traffic con gestion. Strategies under consideration include implementation of variable rush hour pricing (also known as "congestion pricing"); expanded transit services for commuters; and employer commitments to expand telecom muting and/or flexible scheduling options for employees.
"Our quality of life and continued economic prosperity demand that we find creative solutions to the growing burden of congestion," says U.S. Secretary of Transportation Mary E. Peters. "We want to work with forward-thinking state and local leaders to find new ways to get people and goods moving again."
State and city agencies have until April 30 to submit their applications. Secretary Peters expects the results to be announced by Aug. 8.