ROADS/BRIDGES: ‘Rhode Works’ to fund repair of R.I. infrastructure

Rhode Works serves as a new funding initiative to repair Rhode Island's crumbling infrastructure

February 16, 2016

Rhode Island has adopted RhodeWorks, a new initiative to repair 650 bridges and roads in the state by investing more money in transportation infrastructure.

"We have the worst bridges, roads and overpasses in America and this plan will fix hundreds of them before an emergency occurs," said Gov. Gina Raimondo.

Rather than raising the state gas tax, the state of Rhode Island is introducing a new toll on commercial trucks that will pay for part of the plan. The Rhode Works program will charge commercial trucks a minimum toll of $3 and a maximum of $20 for a one-way route along I-95.

Executive Director and CEO of International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association, Patrick D. Jones praised Gov. Raimondo for the plan.

“In response to the need for additional dedicated funding, Rhode Island and many other states are looking at alternatives such as tolling. Tolling is one of the most powerful and effective tools in the tool box to fund and finance vital transportation infrastructure. Across 35 states, tolling generates more than $14 billion annually in revenues to support nearly 6,000 miles of toll roads. Therefore, we commend the governor and state legislature for turning to this important tool. And with all-electronic tolling, there is no stopping and waiting. Trucks pay their toll while moving at highway speed beneath an overhead gantry,” Jones said

The plan should also create 6,000 construction jobs through 2024.

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