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Building for the Future: Easing California's Transportation Crisis with Tolls and Public-Private Partnerships

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Publication Date: March 2005

Publisher(s): Reason Foundation

Author(s): Robert W. Jr. Poole

Topic: Transportation (Highways)

Type: Report

Coverage: California

Abstract:

California is projected to grow to 50 million people between 2000 and 2030, a net increase of 16 million. California's urban freeway systems are already nearing capacity, with massive congestion during ever-lengthening peak periods, yet current plans call for only minor increases in capacity. Since the freeways will continue to carry more than 90 percent of commuters and the vast majority of all freight, it is crucial that California's highway capacity keep pace with growth, so that people and goods can keep moving. But even before the current transportation funding crisis, available highway financial resources were hard-pressed even to maintain the existing infrastructure, let alone add to its capacity. Hence, this study proposes the creation of new financing and project-delivery methods for California highways, aimed at providing the resources to make major improvements in this vitally important infrastructure.