For years, truckers have been sounding the alarm about how little parking is available to them. In late September, the federal government finally responded to this crisis. The USDOT convened the National Coalition of Truck Parking to outline its plan to shore up the shortage of parking spaces for truckers.
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg opened the meeting. He acknowledged that multiple trucking advocacy groups have reached out to his office about the parking shortage. According to the American Trucking Associations, 98% of truckers struggle to find parking on their routes. This struggle both costs truck drivers valuable rest time and the transportation industry a lot of money. After that, Buttigieg moved on to talk about what the USDOT itself was doing to help truckers out.
Meeting Includes Announcement of Truck Parking Handbook, $40 Million in Grants
The meeting included two significant announcements from the USDOT. The agency touted two steps it took to alleviate the parking shortage. It released a handbook to guide local governments in the development of more parking, and it announced the first two federal grants for developing parking spaces for truckers.
The handbook outlines how local groups can help truckers.
The Truck Parking Development Handbook outlines how state and local governments can help truckers going forward. It focuses on how best to meet trucker demand while ensuring everyone stays safe on the road. It also lays out the reasons why these groups should care about truck parking, such as economic development and highway safety.
Two truck parking grants in the Southeast should help things a bit.
The USDOT also announced that two projects focused on parking for trucks had received Infrastructure for Rebuilding America grants. These grants represent the first time that federal grants have been earmarked for truck parking. The two projects will invest around $40 million to add around 250 parking spaces to major transportation corridors in Tennessee and Florida.
Interstate truckers have it tough these days. Not only do they have to deal with the complex process of federal filings like IRP, but they have to spend as long as an hour looking for parking! Hopefully, these new USDOT guidelines and projects will help truckers stay safe and efficient.