Nebraska is set to spend a record $600 million on the state transportation system over the next five years.
Gov. Pete Ricketts says increasing spending on roads and bridges should pay off in the long run.
“Our three largest industries are agriculture, manufacturing, and tourism, all of which depend upon on a strong transportation infrastructure to be able to grow,” Ricketts says during a news conference outside the Department of Transportation headquarters. “So, if we’re going to grow our state and create more opportunities for young people, we have to have that 21st Century infrastructure which is why programs like what we have going on here are so important, this record high investment in our transportation infrastructure will help us make sure we can continue to grow our state in the future.”
The funding comes from both state and federal sources, with federal money making up approximately 40% of the state transportation budget. State money comes from the state Highway Trust Fund, the Build Nebraska Act, and the Transportation Innovation Act.
Nebraska Department of Transportation Director Kyle Schneweis says the projects are scattered across the state, with a specific aim in mind: economic development.
“What we’ve tried to do in the selection of our projects is identify the opportunities to do projects that have the greatest economic output,” Schneweis says. “And so, that’s part of our selection, it’s part of the reason that you see those capital improvement projects that we have is we’re looking not just at engineering, traffic and safety and those things that are so important, but also what will the economic impact of those projects be? So that was part of our prioritization and part of our selection.”
The Department of Transportation released its Program Book for Fiscal Years 2019-2024, detailing transportation projects for the next five years.
The governor’s office released the projects slated for the upcoming year:
- 20 miles of Hwy 275 Expressway Design-Build from Scribner to West Point, Cuming and Dodge Counties
- 18 miles of Interstate reconstruction near Big Springs and Chappell, Deuel County
- Statewide pavement and bridge preservation including:
- 14 miles on Hwy 283 from Elwood North, Gosper County
- 12.5 miles on Hwy 77 from Princeton to Lincoln, Lancaster County
- 10 structures on Hwy 53 near Alexandria, Thayer County
- 11 miles on Hwy 64 in Omaha, Douglas County
- 6.5 miles on Hwy 96 west of Burwell, Garfield County
The DOT Program Book is published annually. Click here to review the Program Book.