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TxDOT-Statewide Podcast

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The Texas Department of Transportation wants you to get the facts on transportation in Texas. Get them here with this weekly podcast.

The Texas Department of Transportation wants you to get the facts on transportation in Texas. Get them here with this weekly podcast.
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The Texas Department of Transportation wants you to get the facts on transportation in Texas. Get them here with this weekly podcast.




Don't Mess with Texas

When country music artist Kevin Fowler was growing up in West Texas, he listened to the likes of George Strait, Willie Nelson and Stevie Ray Vaughn. And while those names have become synonymous with greatness, Fowler recently joined their ranks with his selection as one of three artists promoting this year's Don't Mess With Texas campaign. I spoke with Kevin recently about his involvement with the iconic Texas program. For more information, visit http://dontmesswithtexas.org/.


UM Solar Car Team Rolling Through Texas

Driving across the country takes planning and preparation, not the least of which involves figuring out where to get gas in some desolate places along the route. But for the University of Michigan's Solar Car Team, which recently rolled through Texas on a practice run, fuel is the least of their concerns. For more, I spoke with Allison Hogikyan, a freshman engineering student and team spokesperson. For more information about this unique project, visit www.umsolar.com.


Best of the TxDOT Podcast: RideScout - The Logistics of Getting There

Need to get from Point A to Point B? Someday soon you might have more options than you think thanks to the new RideScout app, which debuted in November. RideScout CEO and co-founder Joseph Kopser sat down with me at the 9th Annual Texas Transportation Forum to tell me more. This episode originally posted in January 2014.


Fisher: "Teen Safe Driving Affects All of Us"

Nearly everyone has an opinion about teen drivers. And while teen drivers are pretty much the same everywhere, in New Jersey, they're dying at a much lower rate than in Texas and much of the United States. For more on how New Jersey does it, I spoke with Pam Fischer, founder of the New Jersey Teen Safe Driving Coalition.


Red Ball Express: The Logistical Sequel to D-Day

As we celebrate the 70th anniversary of the allied invasion of Normandy during World War II, also known as D-Day, what is often overlooked is not only the logistics of preparing for such an operation, but the logistics required after the invasion as the allies pushed east toward Paris, and then to Germany. The unsung heroes of the march to Berlin were a group of dedicated truck drivers, many of them African-American, who drove supplies from the French coast to the front lines in an...


123 Safe Days of Summer

Summer is the best time of year to travel Texas' highways. School is out and vacations beckon, as do the lazy afternoons spent pool side or at the beach. But summer is also the best time for TxDOT crews to work on the more than 80,000 centerline miles of roads across the state, meaning that our best time to work is when the most cars are on the road. It's no surprise then that accident rates between TxDOT and the traveling public go up between the beginning of May and the end of August,...


Study: The Drunk Driver Most Likely to Kill Your Child? You.

We've all heard the heartbreaking narrative of a family on vacation or out to dinner getting hit by a drunk driver. The crash kills at least one of the family's children though the drunk driver isn't injured. We all shake our heads and talk about how the drunk driver should meet some kind of special fate. And while children are killed that way in DWI crashes, a recent study directed by Dr. Kyran Quinlan shows the most common scenario hits a lot closer to home. To read more of Dr. Quinlan's...


Texas Tourism: An Industry that Keeps on Giving

While Oil and Gas exploration gets the headlines, another industry in Texas is quietly booming to the tune of $67 billion annually - Tourism. As Texas Travel and Tourism Week comes to a close, I spoke with Brad Smyth, Tourism Director for the Governor's Office of Economic Development and Tourism about the impact Texas tourism has on transportation, the economy and the nation. For more information on tourism in Texas, visit www.traveltex.com.


May is National Bike Month

As the weather warms and April turns to May, more and more Texans are hitting the road on their bicycles. Cyclists, motorcycles and motor vehicles are all subject to the same traffic laws, but cyclists are the most vulnerable to driver inattention and aggression. To raise awareness of bicycles on the road in Texas and across the country, AAA Texas is supporting National Bike Month. For more I spoke with Doug Shupe with AAA Texas.


RMD's Tilden: "We Can Get Ahead of the Curve"

Over the years, the Texas Department of Transportation has purchased thousands of parcels of land to build highways. But sometimes those plans change, or technology improves, causing the original design of a project to change after the right of way has been purchased. Traditionally, TxDOT has largely held onto that property in the thought that once purchased, it might be used for a future need. But the department's recently formed Real Estate Management and Development Division is changing...


Best of the TxDOT Podcast - Foxx: Encouraging Collaboration

Last July, President Barack Obama appointed former Charlotte, N.C., Mayor Anthony Foxx to become the nation's 17th Secretary of Transportation. Foxx inherited a national transportation portfolio dealing with aging infrastructure, funding shortfalls and the expiration of the current transportation bill, MAP-21, this coming October. I spoke with Secretary Foxx following his keynote address to the 9th annual Texas Transportation Forum, Jan. 6-8, in San Antonio. This episode originally posted...


Best of the TxDOT Podcast - It Can Wait: Don't Text and Drive

It's not often that a service provider of any kind tells its customers not to use its products, but that's just what AT&T is doing with its "It Can Wait" program, aimed at putting an end to the American addition to texting and driving. For more, I spoke with Jim Carter, Assistant VP of Market Research and Analysis for AT&T, during the 9th Annual Texas Transportation Forum. This episode originally posted in January 2014.


Don't mess with Texas Trash-Off

Spring cleaning is happening everywhere, including on Texas roadsides as TxDOT and Keep Texas Beautiful launch the Don't mess with Texas Trash-Off on Saturday, April 5. This month-long event means that thousands of volunteers will be picking up litter on roadsides all across the state. For more, I spoke with KTB's Christine Chute Canul.


TxDOT Committed to Developing Quality Rail Network

Last September, Erik Steavens became TxDOT's second director of its Rail Division, which immediately placed him at the forefront of the ongoing high-speed rail discussion both in Texas and across the United States. Before coming to TxDOT, Steavens worked as the Director of Intermodal Programs for the Georgia Department of Transportation, and before that worked for the Federal Highway Administration. Now six months into his second job directing rail projects at the state level, I spoke with...


Port Aransas Ferry: Full Speed Ahead for Spring Break

Spring Break is upon us and, while for most of us that means time off with family, for those who operate TxDOT's Port Aransas ferry boats it can mean some long days. For more, I spoke with Howard Gillespie, Director of TxDOT's Ferry Boat Operations in Corpus Christi.


Raymond: Take Care of Transportation Infrastructure

State Representative Richard Peña Raymond represents District 42, which is entirely within the city of Laredo. It also puts him in a unique position to observe up close the nation's largest inland port, and its third largest overall. That much trade requires an enormous amount of infrastructure that has only come relatively lately to the Laredo area. I spoke with Representative Raymond about how Laredo is managing that explosive growth, and what the future holds.


Working with Congress for Texans

Most often when TxDOT officials work with elected officials, it's at the state or local level. But there's another political body with which TxDOT works regularly - Congress. Representing the interests of Texas residents and motorists where 49 other states are competing for the same funding can be a tricky exercise, but few have managed it better than Coby Chase, TxDOT's Director of Federal Affairs, who is set to retire at the end of Feb. I spoke with Coby about how TxDOT represents itself...


WAVE: The Future Is Now

Not all that long ago, Wes Smith's concepts of charging transit vehicles wirelessly from stations under the roadway sounded like something from Star Trek, one of the entrepreneur's favorite television shows. But for Smith, and his Wireless Advanced Vehicle Electrification - or WAVE - technology, the future is now. For more, I spoke with Wes at the recent Texas Transportation Forum in San Antonio. For more, I spoke with Smith during the 9th Annual Texas Transportation Forum.


Best of the TxDOT Podcast - Solemn anniversary: Nov. 7, 2000 was the last fatality-free day on Texas highways

November 7, 2000 was Election Day. It was also the last day that no one died on the highways in Texas. In the thirteen years since that day, more than 45,000 people have lost their lives in crashes and incredibly, the rate at which those deaths are occurring is accelerating. For more, I spoke with TxDOT's Deputy Executive Director, John Barton. This episode originally posted in November 2013.


Best of the TxDOT Podcast - Study: American Attitudes on Risky Driving Changing ... For the Worse

A recent survey by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety showed that in the past four years, many Americans' attitudes about drunk driving, drowsy driving, distracted driving and aggressive driving have begun to change and not for the better. For more, I spoke with AAA Texas spokesman Doug Shupe. For more information on this study, log on to AAAFoundation.org This episode originally posted in October 2013.