New Orleans — Six transportation projects in the Southeastern Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (SASHTO) region received top honors in the America's Transportation Awards competition for improving safety and mobility, reducing traffic congestion, excellence in emergency response and saving taxpayer dollars.
"This competition showcases the outstanding, innovative and diverse range of transportation projects that are improving travel and the quality of life in America, even during a time of funding uncertainty," said Mike Hancock, American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials president and secretary of the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. "This is an opportunity to recognize state DOTs for their hard work and incredible results and focus attention on the pressing need for Congress to pass a long-term surface transportation reauthorization bill that is supported by a sustainable source of funding."
A record 37 states entered 73 projects in this year's America's Transportation Awards competition, which is sponsored by AASHTO, AAA, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Projects are evaluated in three categories: Under Budget, Best Use of Innovation, and Quality of Life/Community Development.
Eleven transportation projects were entered in the SASHTO competition. The following state DOT projects received regional awards:
In the Quality of Life/Community Development category, Mississippi Department of Transportation's Sangani Boulevard expansion won as a small project (less than $25 million) and Florida Department of Transportation's Veteran's Memorial Bridge replacement won as a medium project ($26 million-$199 million).
The Florida Department of Transportation's San Sebastian River Bridge project (small project) and Kentucky Transportation Cabinet's Interstate 65 Widening project (medium project) won in the Under Budget category.
The Florida Department of Transportation's Mathews Bridge Impact and Emergency Response project (small project) and North Carolina Department of Transportation's Charlotte Regional Intermodal Facility (medium project) were winners in the Best Use of Innovation category.
Today's announcement of the SASHTO winners concludes the regional phase of the competition. On Sept. 8, AASHTO will announce the 10 regional projects that received the highest overall scores. Those 10 projects will compete for the National Grand Prize and People's Choice Award. The Grand Prize winner is selected by a panel of transportation experts. The People's Choice Award is decided by online voting, which begins Sept. 8. The winners of both national awards will be announced in November, at the AASHTO Annual Meeting in Charlotte, N.C. Each winning state DOT also will receive a $10,000 check to be donated to a transportation-related charity or scholarship program of its choosing.
Learn more about this year's entries and cast your vote in the People's Choice Award competition beginning on Sept. 8 at www.AmericasTransportationAwards.org.