New Jersey's Transportation Trust Fund, which was created in 1984 as a pay-as-you-go funding source for transportation investment, is now overburdened with debt and will go bankrupt by mid-2011. The Tri State Transportation Campaign cites a new report that the deficit created by the shortfall could be nearly 1 billion dollars a year with a potential loss of 1.6 billion more in federal matching funds.
What could this mean for bicycling and walking? It depends how you look at it. The lack of maintenance/construction on roads creates some interesting dynamics.
- New Jersey's new complete streets policy roads should mean more sidewalks, bike lanes and better traffic signals for new road projects
- Projects that widen intersections make bicycling and walking more difficult and dangerous.
- Since the TTF contributes money to NJ TRANSIT another round of fare increases/service reductions is possible
- Closed bridges reduce truck and motor vehicle traffic on connecting roads could make life easier for bicyclists who can often cross closed bridges.
- Potholes make riding more uncomfortable and increases the risk of losing control of the bike.