Smart Growth America statement on new Senate transportation reauthorization bill

Yesterday, the Senate Environment & Public Works Committee released the MAP-21 Reauthorization Act (S. 2322), a bipartisan bill that reauthorizes the Federal transportation program through 2020. Geoff Anderson, President & CEO of Smart Growth America, issued the following statement in response.

“I applaud Senator Boxer and Senator Vitter for advancing this bill to provide immediate and stable funding for America’s transportation networks. How we build our nation’s infrastructure has tremendous implications for neighborhood development and the economic resilience of our communities. The proposed bill includes provisions that will help local communities grow in smarter, stronger ways.

“We strongly applaud the inclusion of a provision to provide financing support to help communities create economic development along transit corridors. We are thankful for the strong leadership demonstrated by Sen. Schatz (HI), as well as Sens. Markey (MA), Gillibrand (NY), and Merkley (OR) in highlighting the growing need to support reinvestment in our communities. This measure will allow communities to better realize the potential of their transit systems, grow their economies, provide families with more housing and transportation choices while giving both the private and public sectors the financial tools to help make it happen. We are also pleased that the bill takes key steps to improve safety for all users of the transportation system, specifically adding safety performance measures for both motorized and non-motorized travelers.

“We look forward to continuing to work with Senator Boxer and Senator Vitter to make improvements to our Federal transportation program to ensure the safety of all road users by requiring states to adopt inclusive transportation policies that consider all users of the roadway. We also look forward to working with the Committee to better support direct local access to federal funds to promote local fiscal and economic resilience.

“We appreciate the efforts of Senator Boxer and Senator Vitter and look forward to partnering with them as the bill moves through the Senate to strengthen and include more measures that will help American communities grow and develop in smarter, stronger ways to best support their local economies.”