Washington, DC, August 3, 2021 — State department of transportation projects in Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, North Carolina, and South Carolina earned regional recognition in the America’s Transportation Awards for projects that provided innovative transit options in rural communities, improved roadway safety, and boosted freight movement efficiency, among other benefits.
“As the COVID-19 pandemic forced many Americans to drastically change work patterns, state DOT employees continued the harrowing work of keeping our transportation systems operating safely and efficiently for those who had to travel, whether by vehicle or other means,” said Jim Tymon, AASHTO executive director. “The America’s Transportation Awards program highlights just a few of the projects and programs across the country that had a positive impact on our communities’ quality of life during an otherwise uncertain time.”
Sponsored by AASHTO, AAA, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the competition serves as a way to recognize state DOTs and highlights the projects they deliver that make their communities a better place to live, work, and play. Project nominations fall into one of three categories: Operations Excellence, Best Use of Technology & Innovation, and Quality of Life/Community Development. All nominated projects will first compete on a regional level against projects of their own size: “Small” (projects costing up to $25 million), “Medium” (projects costing between $26 million and $200 million) or “Large” (projects costing more than $200 million).
In the Southern region, six states nominated 16 projects. As a result, five state DOTs took home the following eight America’s Transportation Awards.
Florida Department of Transportation — Restoring a Bridge: American Legion Drive over the Peace River project (Quality of Life/Community Development, Small category) (TIE)
Georgia Department of Transportation — Macon-Bibb County Design-Build Bridges project (Quality of Life/Community Development, Small category) (TIE)
North Carolina Department of Transportation — Reconstruction of Salem Parkway (U.S. 421/I-40 Business) (Quality of Life/Community Development, Medium category)
South Carolina Department of Transportation — S.C. Phase 1 (Rural Road Safety Program) (Operations Excellence, Small category)
Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development — I-10 Widening Project (Operations Excellence, Medium category)
Florida Department of Transportation — Leveraging Innovation: How FDOT Transformed the Gateway to Florida Keys (Best Use of Technology & Innovation, Small category) (TIE)
North Carolina Department of Transportation — Reimagining Rural Transit with Technology project (Best Use of Technology & Innovation, Small category) (TIE)
North Carolina Department of Transportation — Monroe Expressway: A High-Speed Alternative to U.S. 74 project (Best Use of Technology & Innovation, Large category)
More on America’s Transportation Awards categories:
- Community Development/Quality of Life – Recognizes projects that provide significant benefits to the communities in which they are located, especially in the form of economic growth and the well-being of citizens
- Best Use of Technology – Recognizes the use of new technology and creative solutions implemented by a state DOT
- Operations Excellence – Recognizes projects that deliver a more reliable, well-functioning, and safer transportation system through operational solutions
The three highest-scoring projects from each regional competition earn a place on a “top 12” list of projects that will compete for the national Grand Prize – selected by an independent panel of industry judges – and the People’s Choice Award, chosen by the general public through online voting. In addition, those top national winners each receive $10,000 cash awards to be donated to a charity or scholarship of the state DOT’s choosing.
The 12 finalists will be announced and online voting for the People’s Choice Award will begin in September. Both the People’s Choice Award and the Grand Prize will be announced this October at the AASHTO Annual Meeting in San Diego.