When it comes to our nation’s infrastructure needs, nobody is unaffected. While lawmakers may authorize funding, the conditions of local roads, bridges and transit impact all Americans. To make the best decisions with limited funding dollars many state DOTs and other infrastructure owners are seeking community input for improving infrastructure.
In Arizona, the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) is seeking ideas for highway alerts that will encourage safe driving through a contest where people can submit safety messages. While this contest does not directly relate to infrastructure funding per say, it acknowledges the DOT’s willingness to listen to and include community input in making roads safer.
Arizona isn’t the only state actively seeking community input on infrastructure. In Washington, D.C., DDOT allows residents to request pothole repair services by calling the mayor’s call center or submitting a request online and indicating the location and description of the pothole. In New York City, NYDOT is developing a citywide transit plan to assess the transportation needs of New Yorkers and is soliciting public opinions through a series of public input sessions and an online survey. “With input from the community, the plan will identify citywide needs, values and a shared vision, and then define priorities for enhancing transit service for our neighborhoods and connecting all residents to safe, convenient and reliable public transportation,” said NYDOT on its website. Virginia is another state that involves the community in infrastructure decisions through public hearings, meetings and events for citizens to learn about and give their opinions on transportation projects and issues.
It is encouraging that state DOTs are realizing the value of community input in their infrastructure planning decisions. Find out how you can get involved and remember you can always contact your federal and state legislators for issues that can’t be resolved at the local level.