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For Immediate Release
May 23, 2006

Governor Announces Multi-County Project for 2007

Nashville, Tenn.—Governor Phil Bredesen today released a three-year (2007-2009) Multi-modal Work Program for the state of Tennessee. The proposal includes 169 transportation projects & programs, including 112 individual highway projects, 27 transit, water, rail & aviation initiatives, and 31 transportation programs serving Tennesseans across the state.

"Through the Department of Transportation’s long range planning process, we have worked strategically to develop a needs-based project list.  The process involved many citizens, local officials, transportation planners, stakeholders, and legislators across the state.  It requires new projects to meet specific criteria in order to be funded, and continues to fulfill the state’s commitment to complete projects already in the development phase,” said Governor Bredesen.  “The projects address the needs of the transportation system, improve safety on our highways and will continue to spur economic growth across the state."

The Long Range Transportation Plan includes a provision for the yearly issuance of a 3-year multi-modal plan for projects and programs that will enable the state to achieve Tennessee's transportation vision as outlined in the plan.  TDOT will have an estimated budget of $1.7 billion for the next fiscal year.

“This new project listing includes funding for various phases of project development including location and environmental studies, preliminary engineering, right of way acquisition, construction, and includes many operational components,” said TDOT Commissioner Gerald Nicely. “We have a very solid three year project forecast here that represents a fair distribution of the department’s overall budget across the state.”

Commissioner Nicely explained that the 2007-2009 Multi-modal Work Program lists projects funded for the various stages of development in the first year of the plan. It also proposes funding for a portion of the second and third year plans leaving flexibility for additional projects in those years.

Counties included in this project are: Cumberland, Roane, Campbell, Anderson, Jefferson, Sullivan and Washington.

As part of TDOT’s SmartWay system, this project is funded for construction for seven overhead Dynamic Message Signs (DMS) along with accompanying Highway Advisory Radio (HAR) transmitters and signs, installed at various locations along I-40, I-75 and I-81 in East Tennessee.  These devices will provide the traveling public with valuable traffic information regarding roadway conditions, incidents and detour information.  Devices will be operated from the Regional Transportation Management Center in Knoxville.  Locations will include I-40 on Rockwood Mountain at the Cumberland / Roane County line, I-75 on Jellico Mountain in Campbell County, I-75 in Anderson County,  I-81 and I-40 interchange in Jefferson County and the I-81 and I-26 interchange in Sullivan and Washington Counties.

TDOT SmartWay uses advanced information technologies to improve the safety and operation of highways and other transportation modes, such as public transit. There are several components of SmartWay.  Systems in Knoxville, Memphis and Nashville, and now under development in Chattanooga, offer real-time traffic conditions on line at www.state.tn.us with video supplied to local broadcasters from TDOT’s SmartWay traffic cameras.  Message boards provide immediate information to motorists, and our on-line dynamic TDOT SmartWay maps display weather related road conditions in addition to construction locations and road closures.

TDOT SmartWay is designed to reduce traffic congestion by reducing incident clearance time, increase safety by decreasing the number of secondary accidents, and, by working in conjunction with our incident management program (HELP), improve emergency response to traffic situations.

“Due to the mountainous terrain and erratic climate of the east Tennessee region this project will provide motorists with accurate and up to date information traveling these interstates,” said Senator Charlotte Burks.  “Motorist will be able to know about problems in advance, and then they can make informed detour decisions.”

“Anytime there is an incident on the interstate on one of the many mountains in east Tennessee, motorist have no way of knowing about the problem and can easily be involved in secondary crashes,” added Representative Tommy Kilby Legislator. “This system will be able to communicate with motorist about potential hazards and delays.”

TDOT’s complete Long Range Transportation Plan which includes a 25-year strategy for the future of transportation for the state can be viewed at www.state.tn.us/tdot

To review the entire Multi-modal Work Program list and individual news releases, go to the media room at the web site above.

To review the entire project list and individual news releases click here.

To view a map of the project, click here.