Malloy, DOT postpone transportation projects

Hundreds of state transportation projects will be held up indefinitely after Gov. Dannel Malloy announced that the state’s Special Transportation Fund will need new revenue.

Malloy said Wednesday that his administration will announce detailed proposals later this month ahead of the next legislative session to get money into the STF and allow projects to go back online.

Projects planned include improvements to the Interstate 91/Route 15 interchange on the Charter Oak Bridge and a widening of Interstate 95 from Bridgeport to Stamford. Malloy said even routine highway maintenance and transportation aide to cities and towns “are seriously jeopardized.”  

“If Connecticut does not take the necessary action to allow us to restart these vital projects, not only will it put the state’s infrastructure into a further state of disrepair, it will hurt our economy,” Malloy said in a statement. “If we want to compete in the 21st century economy, we need a transportation system that works for people and businesses, and we need to invest in transit-oriented development to build the communities where people and businesses want to be.  I want to be very clear – this is preventable, but it requires immediate action. The legislature must act this year to avoid potentially devastating setbacks to our transportation system.”

Connecticut DOT Commissioner James P. Redeker said the funding problem is not something “that can be punted until future years.”

“As Gov. Malloy noted last month, the solvency of the Special Transportation Fund is in doubt without new revenues. In real terms, that means we need to postpone indefinitely important projects today,” he said.

State Rep. Tony Guerrera, co-chairman of the Legislature’s transportation committee, said the STF needs a “dedicated, stable stream of revenue” to avoid it continuing to “rot and decay.”

“We sit at the precipice of a transportation tragedy that can be avoided by investing in roads and bridges. We must act immediately in the 2018 legislative session and institute tolls or another revenue stream to avert the oncoming crisis.”