The Senate continues to work to pass its six-year, $350 billion transportation funding bill, even as it acknowledges it and the House will likely adopt a House-revised $8 billion, three-month funding measure before the August recess. The House is expected to adopt the bill today. The hope is that both chambers can come up with a long-term funding bill in a conference committee after the recess.
The world could save $400 billion a year, without building new infrastructure, by using Big Data to digitize its transportation infrastructure, according to a report by McKinsey and Co. The report looks at countries making effective use of data, outlines potential barriers and suggests "one proven strategy is to launch a pilot program, perhaps at a single airport or railway station, that tests data strategies and documents the benefits."
Amazon is calling for governments to establish dedicated airspace for commercial drones. The retail giant anticipates a future where hundreds of thousands of delivery drones are aloft. "Under our proposal everybody has to be collaborative -- vehicles must be able to talk to each other and avoid each other as the airspace gets denser at low altitudes," says Gur Kimchi, co-founder of Amazon's delivery-by-drone division.
Dot Foods is lowering its lifting requirements for workers at its Mt. Sterling, Ill., warehouse from 65 pounds to 35 pounds. The move is designed to attract a wider pool of applicants as well as to cope with increased demand.
Missouri said its Department of Transportation has procured an additional $47 million in funding, as state fee and tax revenue exceeded estimates by 4.5%. The state will also receive $167 million in federal matching funds. Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission Chair Stephen Miller warns that this could be a one-time occurrence, and should not be relied on to fund roadwork in coming years.
Ride-sharing services total 11% of ground business transportation, compared to the combined 60% for taxis and rental cars, a Global Business Travel Association study says. The data found that concerns about traveler safety and insurance coverage prevent one in four businesses from allowing staff to use ride-sharing networks for business travel.
An amendment to the Senate transportation bill introduced this week would legislate new safety standards for Washington's Metrorail system, as well as other subway systems across the country. Following an incident in January, investigators found that Metrorail equipment was outdated and unrepaired and staff were not adequately trained.
As part of the over $7.1 million in federal grants announced by U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, New Hampshire's Memorial Bridge will be fitted with a $355,000 sensor network to monitor structural, traffic and environmental factors.
Gov. Bill Haslam of Tennessee is going on a tour of the state to speak with the public about transportation funding and his idea to revamp the state's gas tax.
Wal-Mart has sent a reminder to its suppliers about labeling requirements amid allegations against other retailers for overstating product amounts to overcharge customers. "This is a reminder to our suppliers to make sure their labeling matches what's in the product," Wal-Mart spokesman Brian Nick said. "We want our customers to know they can have faith in the products they buy at Wal-Mart."