April 20, 2021
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Moving Smarter
The Riverside County Transportation Commission in California has begun construction work on a $270 million ramp linking the toll lanes on the 91 Freeway and Interstate 15 in Corona. Earlier this month, the 15 Express Lanes from Eastvale and Jurupa Valley to Corona were opened.
Full Story: The Press-Enterprise (Riverside, Calif.) (tiered subscription model) (4/19) 
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Tolling Today
The Maryland Transportation Authority's website and phone lines will be unavailable for nine days as customer service facilities are upgraded. The project will improve the customer service experience while helping the authority cut $15 million in annual operating costs.
Full Story: Maryland Matters (4/19) 
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Gas-fueled light vehicles for the 2030 model year and later will be banned in Washington state under a bill passed by lawmakers. The prohibition would also apply to vehicles purchased elsewhere and imported to the state.
Full Story: Electrek (4/15) 
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Technology
BMW announced plans to build electric vehicles with solid-state batteries, joining other automakers such as Volkswagen and Toyota in backing the technology. "By the end of the decade we will have an automotive-grade solid state battery for use in our car series," said BMW's Frank Weber.
Full Story: BNN Bloomberg (Canada) (4/19) 
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The field is narrowing for self-driving technology, writes Timothy Lee, with Waymo taking the lead while leaving room for other competitors. "Maybe driverless taxis, driverless vehicles and driverless trucks are three distinctive markets that will each be dominated by its own group of companies," Lee writes.
Full Story: Ars Technica (4/19) 
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Moving Transportation Forward
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    Maintenance & New Products
    A solar microgrid is being added to a Pennsylvania Turnpike facility along the Amos K. Hutchinson Bypass in Hempfield. The microgrid's 3,224 panels will be capable of producing 1.3 megawatts of energy and will work alongside a natural gas generator to power the maintenance facility and a planned trades building.
    Full Story: Trib Total Media (Tarentum, Pa.) (4/17) 
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    Finance and Funding
    Moody's has designated an A1 rating for North Texas Tollway Authority's first tier revenue and refunding bonds and an A2 rating for its second tier revenue and refunding bonds. The bonds are valued at $402.9 million and $448.8 million, respectively.
    Full Story: Yahoo (4/19) 
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    Policy and Legislation
    The White House is hoping for some congressional action on its $2.3 trillion infrastructure package by Memorial Day, but says it could be broken up and passed in pieces. Press Secretary Jen Psaki says the administration is open to different routes for passage, adding that "there are different components that could move forward, certainly, on their own."
    Full Story: Reuters (4/15) 
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    IBTTA News
    Don't miss the general session covering the complex issues of funding and financing in transportation, and choose one of two breakout sessions focused on P3s and funding. Check out the full program and register. Registration is free for IBTTA members.
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    Do you know an outstanding Leadership Academy alum? The LAAA is introducing a new award this season: the Distinguished Leadership Academy Alum of the Year. Check out the nomination criteria (you can nominate yourself), and submit by June 18. This award will be presented during IBTTA's 89th Annual Meeting & Exhibition in Anaheim, Calif., in October.
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