A report from the U.S. Department of Transportation's (USDOT) National Freight Advisory Committee (NFAC) has made 81 recommendations to improve the performance of the nation's freight transportation system. These recommendations will be used to inform the development of USDOT's National Freight Strategic Plan.
“Our nation’s economic competitiveness depends on a transportation network that can move freight safely and efficiently, especially as we are expected to move double the current amount by 2050,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “I appreciate the work of the advisory committee – their suggestions will help inform the department’s work improving our country’s future freight system.”
The recommendations made by NFAC, now under review by USDOT, include suggestions to improve safety and security across the freight rail network, highlight funding needs and challenges and call for increased streamlining processes and better collection of data and research. The NFAC also proposed exploring ways to improve collaboration for multijurisdictional freight planning, developing goals related to freight safety and addressing workforce development needs as the department develops the National Freight Strategic Plan.
Together, these recommendations highlight the need for increased transportation investment and greater certainty to support the kind of research and planning such projects would require. Earlier this year, Secretary Foxx submitted the GROW AMERICA Act for consideration by Congress. This Act will make critical investments to help improve the safe and efficient movement of freight across all modes of transportation – highway, rail, port and pipeline by providing $10 billion over four years for targeted investments in the nation’s transportation system to improve the movement of freight and by giving shippers, transportation providers and freight workers a real seat at the table for making investment decisions.
A copy of the report can be found here.