Governor Gretchen Whitmer (D) and the Michigan Department of Transportation recently launched an online dashboard to track the status of road projects underway as part of the governor’s Rebuilding Michigan program and provide information about them to the public.
[Above photo by the Michigan DOT.]
“As we continue to invest in better roads and bridges under the Rebuilding Michigan program, this new dashboard will be important to ensure our efforts to fix the damn roads remain on time and on budget,” the governor said in a statement.
“The Rebuilding Michigan plan is financed without an increase at the gas pump and it’ll help jumpstart our economy by creating thousands of good-paying construction jobs,” she added.
An interactive map – updated monthly – shows the location, scope, and progress for each Rebuilding Michigan road and bridge project, along with a running statewide tally of the hours of construction work spent on projects and the jobs supported by the work.
Color-coded icons locate projects on the state map and show the percentage of bond funds allocated for each project spent so far, so the public can see its tax dollars at work. Clicking on each project icon shows more details.
The objective of the five-year Rebuilding Michigan program – approved in 2020 – is to rebuild state highways and bridges that are critical to the state’s economy and that carry the most traffic; fixes that result in longer road life while also contributing to the overall improvement of the state’s infrastructure.
The program allows the Michigan DOT to sell a total of $3.5 billion in bonds to finance dozens of new and modified road construction projects, while accelerating many others.
“The Rebuilding Michigan Program allows [us] to completely rebuild some important freeways that we otherwise could only afford to resurface,” explained Paul Ajegba, Michigan DOT’s director.
“The bond funding allows us to accelerate the rebuilding of many other non-freeway projects,” he added. “In keeping with the governor’s objectives, this dashboard gives people a clear view of the program’s impact across the state in an open and transparent fashion.”
[Ajegba discussed some of the other funding challenges facing the Michigan DOT during a pre-COVID-19 interview with Transportation TV in early 2020; the video production division of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials.]