Ten years into the 21st century, our national transportation policy remains shaped by a law passed in 1956. Three years into a global economic recession, the U.S. economy continues to languish. With millions unemployed, it is time to put Americans back to work rebuilding our public transit systems, roads, and bridges; manufacturing advanced transportation vehicles; and laying the foundation for long-term economic recovery.
Continued underinvestment in infrastructure and environmentally sustainable transportation options has left roads and bridges crumbling, mass transit systems in disrepair, and a transportation sector that accounts for almost one-third of our nation’s greenhouse gas emissions.
In March 2010, the Apollo Alliance convened a task force of leading manufacturers, labor unions, and policy experts in transportation, energy, and economic development—the Transportation Manufacturing Action Plan, or TMAP, task force—to examine options for expanding the domestic production of advanced transit systems, vehicles, clean trucks, and their component parts. Based on input from the task force, TMAP calls for a comprehensive strategy to boost domestic transit and freight manufacturing that starts with increasing current federal investment to $30 billion per year for public transit and $10 billion per year for intercity and high-speed rail.