There is an increasing urgency to addressing the transportation funding crisis, not simply for highways but system-wide. As urban areas—where most of the country’s population lives—become increasingly multimodal, a shift in the funding paradigm is required for such a system to truly flourish.
The Tennessee Highway Patrol has begun using software that will predict where crashes and other safety problems will occur. However, instead of simply identifying problem locations over the long term, the model looks at four-hour segments and 30 square mile areas. This allows police officers and resources to be efficiently dispatched to specific areas to either prevent or respond to anticipated high-risk situations.
The Tennessee Department of Transportation started construction early this month on a Traffic Incident Management Training Facility just outside of Nashville, the first of its kind in the country. The project—worth close to a million dollars—is a joint effort between TDOT and the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security, sponsored by the federal Highway Safety Improvement Project. The facility will feature a replicated Interstate segment, a four-lane highway segment, an interchange, and a four-way intersection. It will be open to any incident responders in the state, including police, emergency crews, and towing companies.