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Indiana Invests Highway, Bridge Stimulus Funds

Sat May 08, 2010 - Midwest Edition
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The Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) has fully advertised or awarded all $658 million of Indiana’s highway and bridge allocation under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The Recovery Act has funded 1,082 transportation projects spread across all 92 counties, with 62 percent of the funds invested in economically distressed counties.

“While the full impact of the Recovery Act has not yet been seen, Indiana’s state and local transportation agencies led the nation in awarding more shovel-ready projects than any other state,” said INDOT Commissioner Michael W. Reed. “A large number of smaller-sized projects maximized the potential for Indiana contractors to bid and compete for stimulus work.”

Indiana’s Recovery Act funding stretched much further than anticipated as a result of contractor bids coming in 15 to 20 percent below engineers’ estimates. In addition to geographic distribution around the state, all 1,082 projects were spread across a variety of categories.

• 776 road repair or resurface projects

• 130 bridge replacement or repair projects

• 95 safety improvement projects

• 23 new or widened road projects

• 35 trail, sidewalk and other enhancement projects

• 32 miscellaneous projects

“Recovery Act transportation funds were fully invested into infrastructure projects that will improve Indiana’s quality of life and economic competitiveness,” said INDOT Grants Director Audra Butts. “State and local transportation agencies delivered this complex transportation program with existing resources and hard work.”

Congress passed the Recovery Act in 2009 amid the fourth year of Indiana’s Major Moves jobs initiative. Short-term Recovery Act projects combined with long-term Major Moves projects to double the record state and local transportation investments seen in 2008.

To keep this momentum going, Indiana is aggressively pursuing billions in competitive grants already funded under the Recovery Act. Indiana’s $71 million high speed rail application was recently selected to upgrade a congested rail segment connecting Detroit with Chicago through northwest Indiana. Indiana also has submitted eight applications competing for $1.5 billion nationwide in Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grants.

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