High marks - and low - on Pa. transportation report card

Posted: March 02, 2013

Pennsylvania's first official transportation report card gave high marks to highway safety and low grades to road maintenance and bridge conditions.

Issued Friday, as state lawmakers begin to craft a new state budget, the report called for more money for highways, bridges and public transit.

Gov. Corbett has proposed a $1.8 billion boost in transportation funding, to be paid for with higher gas taxes.

Friday's report was essentially a self-assessment, prepared for the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and two advisory panels by consultant Gannett Fleming Inc. It cost $70,000.

The Transportation Performance Report was designed to "show the folks who pay the bills how their transportation system is working for them," PennDot spokesman Steven Chizmar said Friday.

Low marks went to pavement reconstruction, local bridge conditions, transit infrastructure, and the ability to expand existing capacity. Those shortcomings were largely due to a lack of funds, the report said.

On the other side of the ledger, most safety benchmarks got high grades, including improvements in traffic fatalities, aggressive driving, and pedestrian safety. Transit ridership and performance also got "good" ratings.

Transportation secretary Barry Schoch said the report showed PennDot "has made great strides in traffic safety and modernizing its operations, but we still have significant needs that we can't address with the resources we have."

Read the report at:

ftp://ftp.dot.state.pa.us/public/Bureaus/Cpdm/STC/TPR%20FINAL%202-7-13.pdf


Contact Paul Nussbaum at 215-854-4587 or pnussbaum@phillynews.com.

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