(KDKZ-TV) A draft 2019-2023 Statewide Transportation Improvement Program that builds on MoDOT’s long-range transportation plan, financial forecast, asset management plan and the prioritization of project needs at the local level by planning partners was presented to the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission.
Transportation Planning Director Machelle Watkins told commissioners the draft STIP includes 1,319 projects, which for the most part will maintain the system in the condition it is in today. On average, this STIP annually invests in 586 lane miles of interstate pavements, 1,065 miles of major route pavements, 2,754 miles of minor route pavements and 172 bridges.
Missouri has the nation’s seventh largest state highway system with 33,856 miles of roadways and 10,403 bridges but ranks 46th nationally in revenue per mile.
The STIP details an annual construction program of $900 million per year for the five-year period, up from $850 million in Fiscal Year 2018. But it is still insufficient to meet the state’s unfunded high-priority transportation needs that are estimated in MoDOT’s “Citizen’s Guide to Transportation Funding” at an additional $825 million per year.
“Community input is critically important to the process of prioritizing local needs and putting the STIP together,” MoDOT Director Patrick McKenna said. “The STIP represents our commitment to Missourians of the projects that will be developed and delivered over the next five years.”
The STIP also takes into account commission action from January that increases cost-share funding to $30 million for 2021, $35 million for 2022, $40 million for 2023, and $45 million for 2024 and thereafter. The purpose of the cost-share program is to build partnerships with local entities to pool efforts and resources in order to deliver state highway and bridge projects.
“We know from discussions our districts have been having with our planning partners that there is a healthy appetite out there for locally important projects that can be expedited by this increase in cost-share funding,” Watkins said.
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