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Mississippi DOT Projects Recognized by AASHTO for Helping Communities Grow

MDOT held a ribbon cutting for the opening of Interstate 269 in 2018. The project was recognized for improving quality of life and helping the economy.
MDOT held a ribbon cutting for the opening of Interstate 269 in 2018. The project was recognized for improving quality of life and helping the economy.
JACKSON, MS — Two Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) projects are featured in a national publication showing the benefits of transportation and infrastructure programs.

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) featured Interstate 269 in DeSoto County and State Route 25 in Rankin County in its “The Benefits of Transportation: The Solutions State DOTs Bring to People & Their Communities” report.

“MDOT is committed to building and maintaining a safe and reliable transportation network to ensure public safety and the delivery of goods and services,” said Commissioner Tom King, Chair of the Mississippi Transportation Commission. “The quality of our infrastructure impacts our quality of life.”

The I-269 construction project, a 26-mile highway through DeSoto and Marshall counties, was featured for vastly improving quality of life for the community and “adding more than 1,400 jobs, providing numerous opportunities for community development, and helping to grow the state’s economy,” the report reads.

The SR 25/Lakeland Drive expansion project, which added travel lanes from Hinds County through Flowood, was featured for allowing “drivers to spend less time sitting in congestion while also keeping the business community happy with better traffic flow for customers,” the report reads.

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“This national recognition shows the good work the professionals at MDOT have done and continue to do in service to Mississippi,” said Commissioner Willie Simmons, Central Transportation District. “They know these benefits first-hand as residents, and because they’re responsible for planning, designing, and building the transportation projects that keep the state moving.”

To illustrate the multitude of benefits transportation investments provide, the AASHTO report includes an interactive map linking website visitors to transportation projects across the country that are reducing travel times, improving safety, protecting the environment, and boosting the economy.

“Both MDOT projects demonstrate how infrastructure impacts us personally,” said Commissioner John Caldwell, Northern Transportation District. “In north Mississippi, it’s the workers who can easily get to their jobs at the logistics businesses along the interstate. In central Mississippi, it’s the downtown commuters who can make it to their children’s sports practice after work.”

The Federal Highway Administration estimates that each dollar spent on road, highway, and bridge improvements results in an average benefit of $5.20 in the form of reduced vehicle maintenance costs, reduced delays, reduced fuel consumption, improved safety, reduced road and bridge maintenance costs, and reduced emissions as a result of improved traffic flow.

Similarly, the American Public Transportation Association estimates that the total long-term economic effect of “enhanced investment” in transit systems sustained over 20 years is nearly 3.7 times the amount being spent annually.

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