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Southern state DOT projects win regional America’s Transportation Awards

News | August 14, 2023 | By:

Eight state department of transportation projects from Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia recently received regional 2023 America’s Transportation Awards for the positive impact on their respective communities; whether by offering emergency repairs in the aftermath of a hurricane, offering new pedestrian features to encourage active transportation, or developing cutting-edge technology for the future that will save lives.

Photo courtesy of AASHTO.

This year’s regional winners were selected from a pool of 19 projects nominated by nine states in the Southern Association of State Transportation Officials or SASHTO region. “These trailblazing projects from the southern region of the United States play a vital role in bolstering safety, advancing mobility, responding during natural disasters, and creating more multi-modal options for all communities,” said Jim Tymon, executive director of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO). “Now in its 16th year, the America’s Transportation Awards commemorates the best of our industry and highlights the critical work that our state DOTs accomplish from coast to coast.”

The America’s Transportation Awards competition – created by AASHTO, AAA, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce – honors state DOTs and the positive impacts their projects bring to communities across the country. With 81 nominations submitted by 36 state DOTs throughout the contest, the America’s Transportation Awards projects are categorized into three groups – Quality of Life/Community Development, Operations Excellence, and Best Use of Technology & Innovation – further showcasing the crucial role that transportation plays for drivers, cyclists, pedestrians, and public transit users.

All nominated projects first compete at the regional level against projects of their own size: “Small” (projects costing up to $25 million), “Medium” (projects costing between $25 million and $200 million), and “Large” (projects costing more than $200 million). This year’s winning southern state regional projects are:

Georgia Department of Transportation’s Historic 5th Street Pedestrian Bridge Rehabilitation Project (Quality of Life/Community Development, Small category)

Florida Department of Transportation’s Hurricane Ian Sanibel Island Emergency Access (Quality of Life/Community Development, Medium category)

North Carolina Department of Transportation’s East End Connector, I-885 (Quality of Life/Community Development, Large category)

Virginia Department of Transportation’s Interstate 95 Northbound Variable Speed Limits, Mile Markers 115-130 (Operations Excellence, Small category)

North Carolina Department of Transportation’s Rodanthe “Jug Handle” Bridge (Operations Excellence, Medium category)

Florida Department of Transportation’s I-4 Ultimate (Operations Excellence, Large category)

North Carolina Department of Transportation’s Flood Warning System (Best Use of Technology & Innovation, Small category)

Florida Department of Transportation’s SunTrax Transportation Testing Center (Best Use of Technology & Innovation, Medium category)

Once all the regional meetings have concluded, the “Top 12” list of finalists will be announced – comprised of the three highest scoring projects from each region. Those top 12 contenders will then compete for the two 2023 America’s Transportation Awards national prizes. The grand prize recipient will be selected by an impartial panel of judges, while the People’s Choice Award will be bestowed upon the project that garners the highest number of online votes from the general public. AASHTO will unveil the winners of these prizes at its annual meeting in November 2023 in Indianapolis. Both the grand prize and the People’s Choice Award winners will receive $10,000 each toward their preferred scholarship or charity. Visit to learn more about this year’s SASHTO nominees. Information courtesy of AASHTO.

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