Better Bridge Program
With one of the best bridge programs in the nation, TDOT launched the largest bridge replacement and rehabilitation program of its kind in state history in 2009. TDOT’s Better Bridge Program is a four-year program approved by the Tennessee General Assembly to utilize bonds to pay for the repair, replacement or rehabilitation of more than 200 structurally deficient bridges in the state. In 2013, TDOT replaced, repaired or rehabilitated 193 of the 200 state-owned structurally deficient bridges, bringing the number of state bridges that are structurally deficient to just 3.3 percent.
The future, however, holds a new challenge for Tennessee and all states. Congress passed legislation in 2012 that changed funding for bridges in the federal transportation program known as MAP-21. The bridge program must now compete with other transportation funding needs, and states will be required to meet maintenance standards set under a new system of performance measures.