Transportation Policy History – Archive of ETW Articles

Someone once asked me if all of the transportation policy history articles I have written for ETW were collected in one place. They were not, so now they are.

Multi-Part Series:

A Conversation With Alan Boyd, the First U.S. Secretary of Transportation

Creation of the U.S. Department of Transportation

ISTEA at 25

What’s the Purpose of Mass Transit? (Urban Development, or Transportation)?

Mending or Ending the Highway Trust Fund – The Great Debate of 1978

The Gas Tax at 100

Pre-1960s Attempts to Create a U.S. Department of Transportation

The First Time the Highway Trust Fund Went Broke

Eisenhower’s Transportation Policies

Amtrak at 50

Transit’s First “Fiscal Cliff: – The Fight for Operating Subsidies

Individual Articles or Papers:

Federal Bridge Policy: Past and Future (August 15, 2007) (Reprinted from Transportation Weekly)

The “Transportation Trust Fund” Idea, 40 Years On… (April 11, 2011) (Reprinted from Transportation Weekly)

The 100th Anniversary of Federal Aid for Highways (July 25, 2012) (Reprinted from Transportation Weekly)

January 21, 1913: The First Congressional Hearing on Highway Aid (January 21, 1913) (Reprinted from Transportation Weekly)

History of the Tolling Ban on Federal-Aid Highways (May 6, 2014) (Reprinted from Transportation Weekly)

Reagan Devolution: the Real Story of the 1982 Gas Tax Increase (together with a 506-page PDF compilation of original source documents) (May 27, 2015)

The Tradition of HTF Bill “Triggers” (July 22, 2015)

Volatile Revenues for Transportation Trust Funds: A Cautionary Tale (September 9, 2015)

Trump City: The Earmark that Changed the Rules (September 10, 2015)

What Can DC Metro’s Past Tell Us About Its Future? (Book review of The Great Society Subway by Zachary Schrag) (May 12, 2016)

A History of Infrastructure Bank Proposals (August 3, 2016)

The 1977 Origins of “Buy American” and “Hire American” Policies (January 18, 2017)

Reagan’s 1987 Highway Bill Veto (together with a 321-page PDF compilation of original source documents) (March 29, 2017)

30 Years of Debate on Air Traffic Control Corporatization (May 4, 2017)

History of Mass Transit Discretionary Grants and How They Have Been Funded (August 9, 2017)

Ten Years of Highway Trust Fund Bankruptcy: Why Did It Happen, and What Have We Learned? (September 5, 2018)

The Johnson-Nixon Mass Transit Bill of 1968-1969 (July 11, 2019)

History of the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund (November 6, 2019)

The Last Time VMT Dropped This Sharply – WWII Gas Rationing (April 8, 2020)

Case Study: How Inflation Can Nullify Transportation Funding Increases (February 18, 2022)

A History of the Secretary’s Ability to Approve (or Disapprove) Highway Projects (March 4, 2022)

The Creation of Contract Authority: June 1922 (June 3, 2022)

Counterintuitive: What If Access to Dedicated Revenues Actually Holds You Back? (September 30, 2022)

The Federal Tax on Driving an Automobile: 1942-1946 (December 9, 2022)

A History of the Perimeter Rule at Washington Reagan National Airport (June 16, 2023)

Why Does the Federal Lands “Sliding Scale” Still Exist? (August 25, 2023)

The History of the Inland Waterways Trust Fund (August 31, 2023)

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