Skip to comments.We Canít Wait: Obama Administration Announces Four Surface Transportation Projects to Be Expedited
Posted on 08/25/2012 2:28:11 PM PDT by EBH
For Immediate Release August 20, 2012 We Cant Wait: Obama Administration Announces Four Surface Transportation Projects to Be Expedited WASHINGTON, DC Today, as part of his We Cant Wait initiative, President Obama announced that four nationally and regionally significant surface transportation projects will be expedited to put Americans to work replacing aging infrastructure and improving the reliability and resiliency of critical highway, transit and rail systems in Maine, North Dakota, Oregon and Washington State. These projects will improve connectivity across the regions both rural and urban providing for the safe and efficient movement of people, goods and services. Coordination among agencies will save between several months to more than a year on these projects.
As part of a Presidential Executive Order issued in March of this year, the Office of Management and Budget is charged with overseeing a government-wide effort to make the permitting and review process for infrastructure projects more efficient and effective, saving time while driving better outcomes for local communities. The Administrations efforts to continuously add more transparency, accountability, and certainty into the permitting and review process will enable project developers and private investors to more efficiently modernize our nations infrastructure. Additional expedited infrastructure projects will be announced in the coming weeks.
Across the country our investments in infrastructure are putting people back to work building and modernizing our transit systems, railroads, bridges and highways, said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "The Administration is committed to doing its part to help communities across the country move forward with these critical projects as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Kennebec Bridge Replacement Project State: Maine Coordinating Agency: Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration Target date for completing Federal permit and review decisions: February 2013
This $25 million project will leverage TIGER funds to replace an 80 year-old movable bridge at the end of its service life with a high-level fixed bridge that will maintain this critical transportation link across the Kennebec River in Maine. This bridge, which carries State Route 197 between Richmond and Dresden, will be built to accommodate the U.S. Coast Guard vessel for ice breaking. Expediting the Section 106 process to allow archaeological data recovery on the Fort Richmond archaeological site while other environmental consultations are being completed is estimated to save up to a year.
Devils Lake State: North Dakota Coordinating Agency: Department of Transportation, Federal Railroad Administration Target date for completing Federal permit and review decisions: Winter 2012; Construction expected Summer 2013
The Devils Lake Rail Improvements project will raise the Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) rail line to address the rising level of Devils Lake and ensure the line remains open to passenger and freight traffic. The Project, which received a $10 million TIGER III (2011) grant for phased infrastructure improvements as part of an overall $100 million program, will allow Amtraks operating speeds to increase, improve long‐term reliability and lower maintenance costs for both passenger and freight rail. The rail line connects rural communities in North Dakota, Montana, and eastern Washington to larger urban centers with essential services in an area where extreme weather conditions frequently close roads and airports. The project is an example of recovery efforts in the Devils Lake area and involves extensive coordination between the North Dakota Department of Transportation, BNSF, US Army Corps of Engineers and the Federal Railroad Administration to ensure timely permitting and environmental approval processes. Through careful engineering and planning, the rail improvements will be constructed with little to no environmental impact, and all work will be completed within existing BNSF right‐of‐way.
Columbia River Crossing State: Oregon and Washington Coordinating Agency: Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration Target date for completing Federal permit and review decisions: August 2015
This $3.5 billion Columbia River Crossing project will replace the I-5 bridges over the Columbia River connecting Vancouver, WA to Portland, OR and also extend an existing light rail system, making a long sought after rail transit link between Portland and Vancouver finally possible. The project also includes the reconstruction of highway interchanges, improved freight access, the procurement of light rail vehicles, and the construction of park-and-ride spaces. It is a multimodal project focused on increasing mobility of motorists, freight traffic, transit riders, bicyclists, and pedestrians. The project is a long-term, comprehensive solution funded jointly by the Federal Highway and Federal Transit Administrations and state and local sources to improve safety and relieve highway and freight congestion problems throughout the region. A renewed effort of interagency coordination to resolve complex issues and define a clear path forward has resulted in a transparent and predictable schedule to complete the permitting and review process. This work builds on previous efforts to enhance coordination between agencies from two states and among federal agencies to develop an effective approach for coordination and streamlining.
Point Defiance Bypass State: Washington Coordinating Agency: Department of Transportation, Federal Railroad Administration Target date for completing Federal permit and review decisions: December 2012
The $89 million Point Defiance Bypass Project is part of the larger Pacific Northwest Rail Corridor (PNWRC). The purpose of the Point Defiance Bypass Project is to provide more frequent and reliable high-speed intercity passenger rail service between Seattle and Tacoma to points south. The project will reroute passenger trains to an existing rail line along the west side of I-5 through south Tacoma, Lakewood, and DuPont. Passenger trains, including Amtrak Cascades, currently must slow down due to curves and single-track tunnels on the BNSF Railway main line tracks near Point Defiance and along southern Puget Sound. This project, with extensive regional benefits, is key to providing more competitive intercity passenger rail service between Seattle, WA and Portland, OR. This project is the result of intensive public and stakeholder involvement, so that any community concerns can be identified and resolved ahead of time to avoid later delays. Outreach to the community and other agencies has been rigorous and is ongoing. In an effort to reduce the overall environmental impacts of the Project, the preliminary design calls for the use of an existing transportation corridor and associated infrastructure, rather than the creation of a new corridor, allowing for the use of an Environmental Assessment instead of a possible Environmental Impact Statement, potentially saving multiple months of environmental review.
As part of a Presidential Executive Order issued in March of this year,
Same phrase again without telling us which of 3 Executive Orders he is doing this under, but my bet is the one National Defense one.
He has assumed full dictatorial powers and is moving swiftly while all our stupid focus is on campaigns and conventions!
Obama Administration on Idle Earmark Projects: Use It or Lose It We Cant Wait Action Helps States Put People to Work, Improve Infrastructure
We Cant Wait: Obama Administration Announces New Public-Private Partnership to Support
We Cant Wait: Obama Administration Announces Seven Major Renewable Energy Infrastructure Projects that Would Power 1http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/08/07/we-can-t-wait-obama-administration-announces-seven-major-renewable-energ.5 million Homes to be Expedited
Oh, boy! Now the trains will run on time!/s
We’re not going broke fast enough?
“We Can’t Wait (to redistribute tax payer’s money to the UNIONS)”
No, we can’t wait to give money to help Warren Buffet’s main business - BNSF. Note that two of these projects help his rail company do business with our tax money.
That’s the one good thing HItler did or so they say.
This jive ass punk has no clue and no chance.
What BS. These projects have been green-lighted by Obama and the "permitting and review process" will just be ignored. The contracts, no doubt, will go to big Obama donors.
Actually I am not so concerned about that. I am more concerned he is doing this under the guise of the EXECUTIVE ORDER.
That's how critical this infrastructure is to him.
Savannah Port Deepening Approved By Army Chief As Part Of ‘We Can’t Wait’ Initiative
A $652 million deepening of the Savannah River shipping channel has been approved by the commander of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, according to a report made public on Thursday.
While that is true, we have traditionally subsidized the airline industry which benefitted particular airline companies. Ditto highways which have benifitted private automobile manufacturers and other auto vehicles manufacturers. Ditto harbors and riviers to facilitate boat transport.
The FedGov subsidizing the infrastructure that supports various modes of transport (and collaterally subsidizing private entities that provide those modes of transport) is already set as precident.
a good choice, but did you see the fine print? 47% of budget is for environmental remediation. They are going to buy giant fish bubblers to increase oxygen for the fish in the river.
YEAH! WHERE IS (or rather, WHO HAS) our last $5 TRILLION dollars ??????? Supposedly spent on all kinds of unspecified but presumably wonderful “shovel ready infrastructure projects” —— WHERE THE BLAZES ARE THEY!????????????????
(At least during the last Depression, FDR really did build some useful stuff..... TVA, Hoover Dam, bridges, etc.)
We got SQUAT! Nothing! Except Screwed!
Someone has all our MONEY!!!!!!!! Who has it? This is a question Governor Romney should ask (along with the obvious, just who is BHO anyway, we have no idea whatsoever who we have Occupying our White House, or !?)
I can’t wait until they impeach this crook.
Instead we got bankrupt solar companies and fat-wallet bankers who still won't lend money.
Unless they start digging in an hour, this won’t help Brack.
Yes, you are correct. Good people can differ on whether the federal govt should be borrowing money to spend on infrastructure projects or not. But the federales borrowed for “shovel ready infrastructure projects” and we didn’t get them!
This has all the appearances of making the Teapot Dome Scandal into childs-play!
And it is an IMMENSE amount of money!
Ok well, the kids and grandkids will pay it back for the rest of their lives.
That is, if there are any jobs left.
(PS: The banks won’t lend because of all the political pressure preventing them from collecting on the loans they’ve already made. Similarly, lending to corporations (at least, big ones) is no longer safe because of how BHO stole the money the GM.Chrysler bond holders already lent to keep those companies afloat.
In short, the politicians have made mortgage loans much more risky (certainly far riskier than current interest rates would support), and the politicians have made business loans much more risky, and the politicians have forbid the banks from making any more student loans.... SO about all the bankers can do is invest in a broadly-diversified portfolio of stocks, including many foreign corporations whose business operations are, largely at least, outside the reach of Washington DC politicians.
AND IF YOU WERE A BANKER RIGHT NOW YOU WOULD HAVE TO BE DOING just about the same thing, at least until the heightened “political risk” in America is, hopefully, reduced.
Thank our politicians (or at least, those in charge these past few years) for most of the problem borrowing funds.
(And thusly, the downward direction of the economy, or much of it, in general).
There are always “unintended consequences” of any political policy or action. In this case, the consequences were SO PREDICTABLE, so OBVIOUS, that they could only have been intentional. All of the politicians’ protestations and press releases aside.
Funny how America and opportunity actually grew for 150 years when it had a small limited government . Now all we grow is debt when technology is advancing at an exponential rate. `A 100 years ago opportunity in America was growing faster than now when technology is 1000000 more advanced. The difference is government is too big and too intrusive. WE don't need government to go to the moon or do anything but keep the border closed , with the military and by other means. we don't need the thousands of government agencies at all levels of government. gov is a great evil that must be minimized .
I don’t really blame the bankers. It is what the Dems have done that keeps them from wanting to lend money. FWIW they won’t lend to small businesses either which is where the most jobs are to be made. I don’t blame anyone for not investing, expanding or lending. IT’S THE COMMIES! No one in their right mind is taking financial risks while the commies hold the reins.
Obama is really starting to act more like a Pharaoh every day it seems.
Four “We Can’t Wait” initiatives= how many millions of dollars. There is one up there in post 14 that is over $600 million on its own...
7 yes 7 ALTERNATIVE energy projects...
Who can stop this stupidness? And why is NOBODY doing anything abut it?
If they aren't yet, arragements have been made and they will be soon.
A billion here down the rat hole here, and a billion there, all down the drain, for idle worship, and the judge on the bench is happy of his all too easy signature power... and we all die of poverty.
Well, the targeted states seem to have become Democrates of late.
I can’t help but wonder if internal polling is showing serious slippage in what should be blue Oregon, Washington and Maine. Why these projects over others?
Connectivity for the unemployed? yeah I can believe it. This is another code word for American tax payer stimulous money to be laundered for pet projects of donors and friends
>Thats the one good thing HItler did or so they say.
Right train, wrong track :) :)
That was said about Mussolini.
And more money to alternative energy companies that continue to fail? Romney needs to hit this hard with the simple question, "Where'd that money go? And why weren't these infra-structure projects started back then?".
He is using his dictator powers of Executive Order.
And we can’t even say this is going on behind the scenes. It is all right there on the Press RElease website...if anyone cares to read it.
Funny how the N Dakota project affects the BNSF railroad which is owned by Obama supporter Warren Buffett!!!
Strange, isn’t it, that all these states are in the northern zones of the country & as fas as I remember, construction gets pretty thin during the winter months.
I don’t see how anything meaningful will be constructed before 2 or more years.
That is AFTER all the delays the GREENIES put into the path of even a driveway.
I’d like to see all the crony connections on these 4 initiatives so far. From 7 more alternative energy projects to transportation....he’s giving away what is left in the treasury.
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