The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials is starting a new public outreach national campaign today that recognizes 10 projects in Missouri.

The association's executive director, Jim Tymon, said this year will be critical for transportation since Congress must pass a new surface transportation bill before the current law expires. 

The campaign titled “The Benefits of Transportation: The Solution State DOTs Bring to People and Their Communities,” is designed to increase public awareness about the benefits transportation investment provides.

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials new national campaign uses an interactive map to link website visitors to transportation projects across the country — 10 projects in Missouri — that are reducing travel times, improving safety, protecting the environment and boosting the economy. 

“The professionals working at state departments of transportation know these benefits first-hand, because they’re responsible for planning, designing, and building the transportation projects that keep America moving by car, truck, rail, bus and bicycle,” Tymon said. 

The association said the 10 Missouri projects recognized in the national campaign are:

— Governor’s Focus On Bridges Program.

— Project Freeway: US 60 Rogersville.

— Columbia I-70 Bridges Design-Build Project.

— Ozark County North Fork River Bridge Replacements following flood damage.

— St. Louis Safety Improvements Design-Build Project.

— Kansas City Divergabout Interchange.

— Route 364/Page Avenue Phase 3.

— Statewide Safe & Sound Bridge Improvement Program.

— Route 5 Shared 4-Lane Highway.

— Infrastructure Improvements for Downtown St. Louis.

Tymon said, “This year will be pivotal for transportation because Congress must pass a new surface transportation bill before the current law expires at the end of September. The purpose of this campaign, website, and report are to help citizens understand the important connection between transportation investment and the benefits we experience today and into the future.”

The American Public Transportation Association estimates that the total long-term economic effect of “enhanced investment” in transit systems continuing over 20 years is in the range of 3.7 times the amount spent annually, according to the association of state highway and transportation officials.

“In addition to the general public, we encourage members of Congress and their staffs to use the website to inform constituents about the importance of transportation investment,” said Patrick McKenna, director of the Missouri Department of Transportation and the association’s president from 2019-2020.

The wide range of transportation infrastructure projects are included within the report on the website http://benefits.transportation.org to “demonstrate how these projects are providing real benefits to real people from coast to coast,” McKenna said.