Friday, May 24, 2024

U.S. Sec. of Transportation Pete Buttigieg speaks on Arizona infrastructure projects

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PHOENIX (AZFamily) — U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg joined Arizona’s Family on Wednesday morning to discuss various state construction projects and how they will affect Arizonans.

Since President Joe Biden signed the bipartisan infrastructure law in 2021, the White House has announced nearly $454 billion in funding. Arizona has received almost $8 billion for 635 infrastructure projects, and $4.7 billion will be used for transportation investments in roads, bridges, public transit, rail, ports and airports.

Buttigieg spoke about the various infrastructure projects coming to the Phoenix area during Good Morning Arizona. One project Buttigieg covered is the bridge work over the Rio Salado River, which is expected to improve safety for walkers and bicyclists. “It’s not just about the numbers, although we’re proud of the billions of dollars coming to Arizona. It’s really the stories of how lives are improved and changed by the work we’re doing,” he said.

Another project underway in Arizona is the I-10 project, which is one of the department’s biggest construction projects. “$95 million to make safety, efficiency and capacity improvements on a stretch that we know is congested and has safety issues. So improving those lanes, getting the interchanges right, the bridge replacement,” he said.

A popular topic was weekend construction closures that have caused drivers to cut into neighborhoods, much like the one that happened during the I-17 closure just days ago. Buttigieg says the department is working with sponsors to make sure they have accurate data and information to help minimize disruptions to drivers. “The biggest thing to remember is at the end of this there will be that better safety, better capacity, especially for Arizona which is one of the fastest growing states in the United States. We’ve got to make sure the infrastructure keeps up or else there will be more congestion just as part of everyday life,” he explained.

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