January 15, 2009

U.S. DOT to improve border travel efficiency

A U.S. Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT) has signed an agreement with Washington state that will provide more accurate and reliable travel information on border wait times, U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary E. Peters announced.

The Cascade Gateway Project will provide border-crossing wait time and travel condition information to drivers and freight carriers. The project will use a variety of innovative technologies, including sensors, to provide pre-trip and en-route wait times on crossing the border to reduce congestion at four Washington state ports of entry, Peace Arch, Pacific Highway, Lynden and Sumas.

"Providing accurate travel information is an essential tool for fighting congestion. With accurate information, travelers and freight carriers will be able to choose the time and route that is most efficient and best meets their needs," said Secretary Peters.

The project is part of the Department's Transportation Border Congestion Relief Program, which is designed to facilitate and accelerate transportation-related capacity and operational improvements at border crossings. Washington State's Cascade program is one of the three projects included in the federal initiative.

Secretary Peters added that as part of the congestion relief program, the project will receive priority access, consistent with current law, to many of the Department's assistance programs, including loans and other innovative financing mechanisms.

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