The Path - Responsible transportation policy in the Mountain States
Transportation systems are the backbone of a strong local economy, allowing people and goods to move efficiently and effectively. At its core, transportation infrastructure is no different than any other type of public or private good and is subject to the law of supply and demand.
In the case of traffic congestion, the demand for road travel exceeds the supply of roads, or capacity, the result of which leads to lost time, lost fuel and excess pollutants emitted into the atmosphere.
Traffic congestion may also lead to capping growth and access while limiting labor markets. In essence, the number of available jobs, available workforce, and accessible services is limited by both distance and time. The more traffic congestion, the fewer opportunities to participate in the economy.
Freedom of mobility allows the public to travel wherever and however they choose with no - or minimal - restrictions. In recent decades, many public officials have waged campaigns to "discourage" certain modes, like cars, by implementing regressive tolling schemes, limiting parking, taking travel lanes away from drivers, and increasing traffic congestion to push people to other modes of transport or eliminate trips entirely.
Where public assistance is needed, it should be delivered quickly, safely, and efficiently, and managed conservatively with strong budgets and planning toward the future.
Public officials should work to accommodate travel demand instead of restricting or manipulating it, thereby providing the public fair access to goods and services across the region.
According to the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for the Boise area, COMPASS, public transportation in The Valley will become insolvent around 2028, and by 2050, will have $328 million in deferred maintenance needs and $982 million in unfunded costs.
Public transit in the Boise Area will need more than $1 billion just to keep assets in good repair and maintain buses – to serve just 0.4% of commuters.
The Reason Foundation ranked Idaho the 8th best state overall, mostly due to good Interstate pavement conditions as well as rural arterial condition.