Today, the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) marked the legislative passage of the Lee administration’s Transportation Modernization Act, a landmark bill that will create a new strategy and invest $3.3 billion to accommodate Tennessee’s record growth, address traffic congestion and meet transportation needs across rural and urban communities. This historic legislation has received support from dozens of organizations across Tennessee and will now head to the Governor’s desk to be signed into law.

“Tennessee needs a transportation strategy fit for the fastest-growing state in the nation, and our plan will prepare rural and urban communities for continued growth and economic opportunity, all without new taxes or debt,” said Governor Bill Lee. “I commend the General Assembly for its partnership to meet our state’s transportation needs.”

The legislation will give TDOT the resources needed to solve the state’s current and future mobility challenges, including seeking the use of public-private partnerships to preserve state funds for rural infrastructure priorities, exploring Choice Lanes to decrease congestion and increase economic impact statewide, and expanding the alternative delivery model to save taxpayer dollars and deliver road projects more efficiently.

“Tennessee’s strategic transportation plan will prepare TDOT with the resources needed to build and maintain roads across our rural and urban communities,” said TDOT Commissioner Butch Eley. “We appreciate the support of the legislature and key partners as we pave the way for Tennessee’s continued prosperity.”

The plan received bi-partisan legislative support and was sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Jack Johnson (R - Franklin), Senate Transportation & Safety Chair Becky Massey (R - Knoxville), House Majority Leader William Lamberth (R - Portland), and House Transportation Chair Dan Howell (R - Cleveland).


“I am tremendously grateful to Governor Lee and my colleagues in the Senate and House for confronting our infrastructure challenges head-on,” said Lieutenant Governor Randy McNally. “This legislation will have a positive effect on our congestion issues without abandoning our pay-as-you-go funding system or increasing the tax burden on our citizens. How quickly and efficiently people and goods can move across the state is directly related to our economic success. Improved transportation and infrastructure mean more jobs and that’s a good thing for Tennessee.”

“The Transportation Modernization Act will play an important part in beginning to ease congestion on our roadways,” said House Speaker Cameron Sexton. “I appreciate Gov. Lee, Lt. Gov. McNally, the House, and Senate for their partnership as we all continue working to address our immediate, emerging, and long-term transportation and infrastructure needs.”

“This is a plan Tennesseans can be proud of. It is an innovative and fiscally conservative approach to modernize our transportation infrastructure without raising taxes,” said Senate Majority Leader Jack Johnson. “I appreciate Governor Lee and Commissioner Eley for their work to put together a solid plan to invest in the future of Tennessee, and I am proud to have been a part of it. I am also grateful to Chairlady Becky Massey for her diligent work to get this proposal across the finish line in the Senate.”

“Our roads are the vital arteries of our communities that connect Tennesseans to their jobs and schools, goods to our businesses, and first responders to the scene in emergencies,” said House Majority Leader William Lamberth. “This investment addresses challenges like potholes, safety, and long commutes, but more importantly, it creates greater, faster access to more destinations. Our state is well prepared to meet the challenges of tomorrow.”

“We are at a critical juncture for transportation and infrastructure in Tennessee. The unprecedented growth in our state over recent decades is the direct result of our sound economic policies, high quality of life, and ranking as one of the lowest taxed states in the country,” said Senate Transportation & Safety Chair Becky Duncan-Massey. “While this yields economic opportunity, it also presents challenges in our ability to move people, goods, and services across our state. The Transportation Modernization Act addresses the state’s growing infrastructure needs in a fiscally conservative way to help improve the lives of all Tennesseans and visitors who travel our roads and ensure Tennessee’s future is prosperous.”

“As Tennessee continues to experience unprecedented growth, investing in our transportation infrastructure is essential to ensuring residents and our economy keep moving forward,” said House Transportation Chair Dan Howell. “The Transportation Modernization Act will provide historic funding to address congestion in both rural and urban areas of our state. It will also provide innovative solutions to these challenges without the need to raise taxes. I was honored to guide passage of this important piece of legislation in the House, and I appreciate Gov. Lee, TDOT, and my colleagues in the General Assembly for their support of this generational shift in how we address infrastructure in our state.”

The Transportation Modernization Act has received statewide support from the following key partners:

· Tennessee Road Builders Association

· Association of County Mayors – Tennessee

· Tennessee County Highway Officials Association

· Tennessee County Commissioners Association

· American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) – Tennessee

· Tennessee Public Transportation Association

· Tennessee County Services Association

· Knox County Mayor Glen Jacobs

· Chattanooga Mayor Tim Kelly

· Knoxville Mayor Indya Kincannon

· Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland

· Cleveland Mayor Kevin Brooks

· Brownsville Mayor Bill Rawls

· Clarksville Mayor Joe Pitts

· Tennessee Chamber of Commerce

· Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce

· Greater Memphis Chamber of Commerce

· Knoxville Chamber of Commerce

· Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce

· Greater Jackson Chamber of Commerce

· Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce

· Bristol Chamber of Commerce

· Kingsport Chamber of Commerce

· Blount County Partnership

· Clarksville Area Chamber of Commerce

· Lawrence County Chamber of Commerce

· Williamson, INC

· Maury County Chamber and Economic Alliance

· Beacon Impact Center

· Reason Foundation

· Greater Nashville Regional Council, which includes the following four Transportation Planning Organizations (TPO):

o Clarksville Urbanized Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO)

o Nashville Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO)

o Middle Tennessee Rural Planning Organization (RPO)

o Dale Hollow Rural Planning Organization (RPO)

· First Tennessee RPO

· The Commercial Real Estate Development Association