Strong Support for Wisconsin Department of Transportation BUILD Grant Application
The Honorable Elaine Chao
U.S. Department of Transportation
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington DC 20590
Dear Secretary Chao:
We are writing to convey our strong support for the Wisconsin Department of Transportation’s (WisDOT) Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) grant application to the U.S. Department of Transportation. Obtaining this critical federal funding will allow WisDOT and its project partners – including the City of Madison, Dane County and the Ho-Chunk Nation – to construct a highway interchange and related roadway improvements at a location where it is urgently needed.
This interchange, located at the USH 12/18 and County Highway AB intersection, is necessary for a number of reasons. First, two at-grade USH 12/18 intersections in that area, at Millpond Road and CTH AB, currently have very high fatality and injury accident rates. Second, vehicular traffic is projected to significantly increase at the Millpond Road intersection over the next several years, including a more than doubling of traffic projected to use that intersection due to planned development in the area. This will only compound the existing traffic safety concerns.
In addition to traffic generated by the development in the immediate area, the Yahara Hills Neighborhood Development Plan (and development plans throughout the far east side of Madison) project that many more additional jobs and residents will utilize this dangerous intersection to access the USH 12/18 corridor. In fact, the Madison Area Transportation Planning Board (MPO) has identified the Reiner/Sprecher/CTH AB corridor as a major regional arterial roadway in its Regional Transportation Plan 2050. This corridor is intended to move high volumes of vehicular traffic north-south from the Village of McFarland to the City of Sun Prairie (further emphasizing the regional importance of the CTH AB intersection with USH 12/18).
The construction and labor associations recognize the positive impacts this project can have in the short-term and long-term. It will provide construction jobs initially during this current economic crisis our nation is facing. It will also provide long-term employment opportunities both in construction and other economic sectors as this area is developed and utilized. That will help play a part in building our economy back to where it was prior to this current crisis.
In conclusion, the signatories on this letter strongly support WisDOT’s effort to improve transportation safety and encourage orderly economic development in that area for many years to come.
The Madison region has excellent economic development potential but faces great challenges and needs U.S. DOT’s assistance. Please give this grant application the highest consideration for roadway infrastructure funding. Thank you very much.
Patrick O. Goss, Executive Director, WI Transportation Builders Assn.
Jake Castanza, Executive Director, Wisconsin Building Trades Council