The Texas Transportation Commission (TxDOT) approved the 2017 Unified Transportation Program (UTP) Thursday with $70 billion worth of projects to help TxDOT meet the state’s growing transportation demands. The plan is the largest of its kind in the agency’s history that addresses capacity, maintenance and safety needs around state.
The 10-year plan, developed with extensive public input, targets congestion in the state’s most-populated areas and includes projects to better connect the major interstates in rural areas with local roads and highways. Also outside urban areas, the program calls for enhancing and completing interstate highways, and addressing the continuing needs within the energy sector and along hurricane evacuation routes.
With more than $70 billion in total funding, the 2017 UTP represents a significant increase from last year’s 10-year plan, which included more than $33 billion worth of projects. The bulk of the additional funding will come from legislative- and voter-approved initiatives to allocate portions of oil and gas taxes, sales taxes and other taxes to the state highway fund. Ending the practice of appropriating state highway funds to agencies other than TxDOT and the passage of long-term federal transportation legislation also contributed to the additional funding.
The new funding in the 2017 UTP is largely allocated into program areas that address safety, maintenance, congestion and rural connectivity needs. It includes funding for all 25 TxDOT districts and 25 metropolitan planning areas throughout the state.
Source: Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT)