Mary Peters Mary Peters, the U.S. Secretary of Transportation says the future of Missouri transportation is at the crux of the future of transportation nationwide. Secretary Mary Peters says Missouri’s transportation system has become one of the top in the nation and she adds that it’s important for Missouri to stay on top with continual advances in roadway improvement and transportation innovation. She outlined some of her ideas at the state’s Conference on Transportation in Jefferson City Thursday and urged the state to become less dependent on the gas tax because she says the tax is not sustainable in the long run. She also encouraged Missouri’s transportation system to shift more of its dependence on state and local governments instead of the federal government.

Peters also highlighted her plan to reduce congestion on the nation’s busiest highways and interstates and included Missouri in her Corridors of the Future Program . She listed the I-70 corridor from Missouri to Ohio as one of the 14 stretches of highways and interstates her program will target.  Some of the goals her program aims to accomplish include roadway improvements such as expanded highway capacity, truck-only lanes and increased development of freight and passenger railways.

Peters stressed the importance of finding a working solution to the controversy over the Mississippi River Bridge.  She says the Missouri Transportation Department and the Illinois Transportation Department must work together because individual state revenues just won’t cut it.  Missouri has been pushing for a toll bride. Illinois has rejected that idea.  But, Peters says a toll bridge is a viable solution.  She met with transportation officials in St. Louis Thursday night.

Download/Listen: Laura McNamara report (:60 MP3)
Download/listen: U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary Peters’ Speech (18:00)