Welcome to CDM Smith.

Eyeing the Future of the Interstate System

U.S. Federal Highway Administration Washington, D.C., USA
​The Interstate Revenue and Policy Options Study explored policy options and developed an analytical tool that will help the nation maintain, preserve and improve the Interstate System.

The U.S. Interstate System carries about one-quarter of all vehicle miles driven in the country. Originally conceived in 1939 and signed into law in 1956, this 47,000-mile system was estimated to cost $129 billion to complete. The aging network is facing some real challenges in transportation funding and demand management that will affect our future mobility.

To help the Federal Highway Administration explore policy options that will help maintain, preserve and improve the Interstate System, CDM Smith led a team to study a broad range of factors related to funding, finance, program management and policy options. The project team developed and applied a rigorous analytical approach for evaluating policy options to ensure that the project results provided viable and meaningful findings.

$
original construction cost of Interstate System
miles in the Interstate System

The project had four objectives:

  1. develop and analyze non-revenue and revenue (primarily tolling policy options)
  2. evaluate benefits and drawbacks of each policy option and the impact on the Interstate System
  3. identify and evaluate incentive packages to implement under current and revised regulations
  4. develop an analytical revenue and cost tool that produces Interstate System related tolling scenarios

CDM Smith developed a high-level hierarchy of potential tolling “applications” that might arise from each of the policy options alternatives. These included no change in current Federal law and restrictions regarding tolling; Congress “enables” Interstate System tolling by states or local/regional entities with or without significant additional federal regulation; and Congress establishes comprehensive national tolling on the Interstate System.
This tool is first of its kind ever developed in the country and provides FHWA with the user-friendly ability to perform in-house analysis of proposed tolling scenarios.

CDM Smith also developed a comprehensive, user-friendly software tool to provide Interstate System related tolling scenario revenue and cost results. This tool is first of its kind ever developed in the country and provides FHWA with the user-friendly ability to perform in-house analysis of proposed nationwide Interstate System tolling scenarios.

Now armed with a suite of guiding documents and an advanced analytical tool, the administration is well positioned to help ensure the Interstate System carries travelers well into the future.

Ben Ritchey Ben Ritchey
The study provides the FHWA with tolling policy options and analysis and an analytic tool to estimate revenue and costs for tolling scenarios.

Related Projects and Insights