Build With Us
When it comes to transportation and mobility in Tennessee, we are at a critical juncture. We are fortunate to live in a state with so much going for us, a direct result of our sound economic policies, high quality of life and ranking as one of the lowest-taxed states in the country.
This blueprint makes Tennessee one of the most popular states for job creation, experiencing a net gain of 137,100 jobs year-over-year (September 2021-September 2022) and population increases of nearly 9% in the past decade. While this yields economic opportunity, it also presents challenges in our ability to move people, goods and services more seamlessly across our state.
Our position as an artery of commerce necessitates our focus to ensure freight, visitors (who spent $24 billion in Tennessee in fiscal year 2021) and citizens traveling our state get where they need to be on time. Further, as employee experience becomes a greater factor in business success, investment in Tennessee will increasingly rely on employers ensuring staff balance their time growing businesses and otherwise enjoying their lives – not sitting in traffic.
Tennessee’s growth is far outpacing roadway capacity investments. This is becoming more prominent throughout Tennessee, not just in urban areas. $26 billion is needed over-and-above the 2017 IMPROVE Act to address both urban and rural congestion in Tennessee. This includes nearly $14 billion in the four major urban areas -- Nashville, Memphis, Chattanooga and Knoxville – and over $12 billion on Tennessee’s rural interstates (view congestion studies) commissioned for these urban areas). Learn more about Tennessee’s traffic congestion challenges.
On average, it takes TDOT 15 years to deliver a project with projects costing 40% over budget due to projects taking so long to get through the development phase. Tennesseans expect and deserve better. With our transportation needs outpacing our ability to deliver, we are asking for more tools in the toolbox to mitigate these challenges. Learn more about TDOT’s delivery challenges.
TDOT has 3,600 current employees and has been functioning very well over the past five years at that level. Unfortunately, we continue to lose people fast and their salaries, which are 10-15% below market level, are a main reason for their departure. We intend to eliminate vacancies to use those dollars to increase salaries towards market level. We are also moving away from the assembly line, which cause delays, and are moving toward a team-based approach that allows for faster and more efficient project delivery. Learn more about TDOT’s workforce challenges.