Nearly three-quarters of Americans are willing to pay increased taxes or tolls to fund roads and other transportation infrastructure, according to a survey from HNTB Corp. to be released today.
The number rises to 84% if those tax and toll hikes are mandated by law to be spent only on the infrastructure projects for which they were intended, the survey found. At the polls in November, voters in Illinois and New Jersey approved measures that require new revenues from transportation-related fees and taxes to be used exclusively for transportation projects.
As a nation, the U.S. is set to fall $1.44 trillion short of what it needs to spend on infrastructure through the next decade, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) stated last year.
HNTB’s survey found that 73% of respondents support public-private partnerships as a way to maintain and build new transportation assets, and that eight in 10 Americans also support adding tolls to existing highways.
The willingness to pay is driven largely by the desire to avoid congestion and save time. Survey respondents would pay $1.70 on average to use an express lane if it would save 15 to 30 minutes of travel time, HNTB said.