New Highways

December 13, 1954

Report Outline
President's plan for highway building
American Highways and Highway Demands
Problems in Financing Improved Highways

President's plan for highway building

President eisenhower's recommendations to the 84th Congress on legislation to authorize a vast long-term program to improve American highways will be foreshadowed in a report soon to be submitted at the White House by the Advisory Committee on a National Highway Program. Meanwhile, indications of what the report will contain have been given in speeches by Gen. Lucius D. Clay, chairman of the Advisory Committee, and in statements by spokesmen for the Governors Conference, which has been making its own parallel studies. At the same time, confusion has persisted as to the scope and projected costs of the new program. The Clay committee report is expected to clear up seeming conflicts in estimates and objectives and provide a definite basis for discussion of plans for obtaining the new and better roads the nation so urgently needs.

The President's Advisory Committee on a National Highway Program was appointed on Aug. 30 to draft proposals for executing and financing a “grand plan” of highway improvement advanced seven weeks earlier at the Governors Conference at Bolton Landing, N. Y. The President on that occasion called for a $50 billion, ten-year road modernization program. The magnitude of the project startled the governors. Partly because the plan threatened to strengthen rather than diminish federal influence over state road construction, and partly because it would almost certainly disappoint state hopes of persuading the federal government to abandon its gasoline tax, the governors initially displayed a hostile attitude.

Later reflection and study brought a complete reversal of state opinion. The executive committee of the Governors Conference on Dec. 2 approved recommendations corresponding closely to the proposals of Gen. Clay, and it was thereupon tacitly agreed that the governors would drop their efforts to make gasoline taxation the exclusive prerogative of the states.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Highways and Roads
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May 04, 2012  Distracted Driving
Sep. 28, 2007  Aging Infrastructure Updated
Oct. 06, 2000  Drunken Driving
Mar. 12, 1999  Truck Safety
Jul. 14, 1995  Highway Safety
Oct. 09, 1981  Interstate Highway System at Twenty-Five
May 05, 1965  Highway Design and Beautification
Sep. 02, 1960  Progress of the Road Program
Mar. 06, 1957  Billboards and Roadside Controls
Dec. 13, 1954  New Highways
Jul. 25, 1939  Prevention of Highway Accidents
May 13, 1935  Elimination of Highway Grade Crossings
Dec. 24, 1932  Federal Highway Aid and the Depression
Apr. 30, 1931  Billboards and Roadside Improvement
Feb. 14, 1929  Toll Bridges and Toll Roads
Jul. 11, 1927  Ten Years of Federal Aid in Road Building
BROWSE RELATED TOPICS:
Motor Traffic and Roads