With the delay of the federal transportation re-authorization and federal transportation funding in limbo, state transportation agencies across the nation are trying to cope any way they can. In California this week, 19 self help local transportation financing agencies - that collectively generate more than $4 billion a year for transportation - drew a large crowd of transportation public agency officials, elected officials, contractors and consultants to the 20th Annual Focus on the Future Conference in Los Angeles to explore their options. Conference speakers discussed current developments in transportation funding, environmental compliance and project delivery. The news on project delivery and innovation was positive, the environmental compliance news mixed, and the funding news pretty discouraging.
Interspersed with the grim chronicling of the current state and federal funding landscapes, the conference highlighted some bright spots, including federal ARRA funds, Measure R funding in Los Angeles, and innovative project delivery, PPPs and congestion pricing.
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