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Highway Boondoggles

Americans are driving less than in years past. Yet states continue to move forward with highway construction and expansion projects that consume a large share of shrinking transportation revenues, even as other needs – from public transportation improvements to road and bridge repairs – go unmet. Highway Boondoggles: Wasted Money and America’s Transportation Future describes 11 highway projects around the country – slated to cost at least $13 billion - that are of questionable value, especially given changing transportation needs.

Fork in the Road, issued in conjunction with Wisconsin PIRG Foundation, examines in detail the way these choices play out in one state, finding that the amount of resources dedicated to just a few highway megaprojects in Wisconsin would be sufficient to meet road repair, transit and other pressing transportation needs across the state.

Both reports demonstrate the need for policymakers to reevaluate massive highway capacity expansion plans in the context of competing needs and changing priorities. See local media coverage of Fork in the Road here. (Photo: Interstate 94 in Detroit, Michigan Department of Transportation) (9/18/14)