Commuters rejoice! With the passing of the new $305 billion highway transportation bill, $205 billion will be spent on highways and $48 billion will be spent on transit projects for the next 5 years. Exciting news for bike lovers, kick scooter enthusiasts, and transit riders across the country. It is the first long-term national transportation spending package in a decade. It even has a clever name: Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act, or the FAST Act (get it?).
Why is the highway transportation bill is important?
There are many reasons why this bill will be so helpful for our country. For starters, the job market! In order to get these highways back to a reliable standard, people will need to be hired EVERYWHERE. The job market will see a nice upwards spike once construction gets underway. So not only will our roads be fixed, but people from all over the country will be given jobs!
The law creates a safety fund designed to reduce bicycle and pedestrian fatalities nationwide. Every year we see stories about accidents on the road, but by having a safety fund we can incorporate practices to help protect our friends and families who commute. With more and more people commuting everyday, it’s important to have the resources to educate drivers about transit safety.
It gets better.
The act also directs the U.S. Department of Transportation to encourage states to implement Complete Streets policies, requiring planners to design streets so they are safe for all road users. The Complete Streets policies help to create a safe and organized strategy for all users of the road. It’s an effort for riders to feel safe and considered.
It’s amazing to see the government taking an interest (albeit overdue) in our country’s roads. We here at Xootr never get involved in politics, but when a bill directly helps to revitalize our nation’s roads giving all commuters a better ride, we HAVE to show our support. So ride on commuters, ride on!