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American Recovery and Reinvestment Act should include a national transportation plan, National Center for Intermodal Transportation says


The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act needs to include an “interconnected, intermodal approach” to the U.S. transportation system, a policy paper issued recently by the National Center for Intermodal Transportation (NCIT) at the University of Denver concludes.

The policy paper recommends that the economic recovery program treat transportation “in the aggregate, not just on a modal basis.”

The Obama Administration’s program addresses “critical elements necessary to invigorate the economy, tackles energy issues and enhances the crumbling infrastructure,” but it’s critical for the program to also have a solid, well-planned approach to national transportation, said Professor Patrick Sherry, the paper’s author, in an April 14 prepared statement.

“Ultimately, investment in the infrastructure will contribute to a stronger economic picture for the entire country,” Sherry said. “But in order to address both the need for an economic stimulus and to improve the overall transportation infrastructure, NCIT believes that a strategically formulated national transportation plan that includes an  interconnected, intermodal approach to our transportation system should be included.”

The policy paper recommends that the economic recovery program include several components, including “injecting critically needed funds into the economy to create long-term economic competitiveness.” Other recommendations include creating a national infrastructure commission to help prioritize projects of regional and national significance, enhancing/supporting public-private partnerships and investing in intelligent transportation systems technology.

NCIT is a partnership between the University of Denver and Mississippi State University. NCIT builds upon the activities of the Intermodal Transportation Institute (ITI) at the University of Denver and the activities of the centers with transportation focuses at Mississippi State. NCIT is a part of the U.S. Department of Transportation University Transportation Centers Program and was reauthorized under SAFETEA-LU.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 4/16/2009