TRB Special Report: Renewing the National Commitment to the Interstate Highway System: A Foundation for the Future

This article summarizes Transportation Research Board (TRB) Special Report 329. This congressionally requested report examines the challenges facing Interstate highways—aging assets, increased traffic, reduced revenues, a radically changing vehicle fleet, and more—and presents recommendations including possible changes in law and resources. Key recommendations include: (1) Congress should legislate an Interstate Highway System Renewal and Modernization Program (RAMP); (2) In the near term, Congress should increase the federal fuel tax to a level commensurate with the federal share of the required RAMP investment, and adjust the tax as needed to account for inflation and changes in vehicle fuel economy; (3) Congress should prepare to employ new federal and state funding mechanisms; (4) Congress should lift the ban on tolling of existing general purpose Interstates; and (5) Congress should direct the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Federal Highway Administration to develop criteria for a rightsizing component of RAMP that would address current and emerging demands to extend the Interstate Highway System’s length and scope of coverage. Additional complementary recommendations called for in the report are also briefly discussed. It is suggested that implementing these recommendations would represent a rededication to a modern highway system resulting in lasting societal and economic benefits.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Photos;
  • Pagination: pp 8-12
  • Serial:
    • TR News
    • Issue Number: 320
    • Publisher: Transportation Research Board
    • ISSN: 0738-6826

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01705730
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: May 23 2019 4:29PM