The Biden administration has distributed $14 billion from the $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill and other sources to improve port infrastructure and waterways and support climate resilience efforts. Out of the $5.5 billion allocated for climate change mitigation, the largest amount -- $1.1 billion -- will be used to reduce surface water linked to algal blooms in the Everglades.
US port drayage rates will continue rising this year due to tight carrier capacity, reduced availability and port congestion, according to software firm BookYourCargo, which estimates that rates rose 51% between 2020 and 2021. "Los Angeles and Long Beach continue to be the most congested ports in the United States, due in part to the fact that 40% of imports are brought in through these terminals," BookYourCargo CEO Nimesh Modi says, adding, "The last two years have demonstrated some fatal flaws in our current supply chain system."
Michigan and Ontario have agreed on a pilot project for a cross-border air mobility corridor. The space will be used for commercial drones that are making deliveries, and could also be used by other aerial systems as an alternative to ground transport.
The White House's new Made in America Council, composed of representatives from 51 US agencies, will meet regularly to advance federal Buy American sourcing policies for the US government's annual $600 billion in procurement. The council "will also help streamline and strengthen the administration's work to effectively and efficiently implement the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act," said Celeste Drake, director of the Made in America Office.
Proposed legislation included in New York Gov. Kathy Hochul's budget aims to cut down on toll evasion before the introduction of New York City's congestion pricing plan in 2023. The proposal specifically covers the use of materials or aids that render license plates unreadable, with penalties including fines of up to $500 and registration renewal bans.
Mark Muriello, IBTTA's director of policy & government affairs, examines the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and analyzes how it impacts public-private partnerships. IIJA's "emphasis on more life-cycle analyses of alternative project delivery methods and overall increases in funding and eligibility may represent fertile ground for increased private investment and project delivery in the years ahead," Muriello writes.
Fitch Ratings has affirmed the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's A- rating for their transportation revenue bonds. The bonds are valued at approximately $82,480,000 in total.
Autonomous driving technology has been oversold, with fully self-driving vehicles likely to be restricted to certain sectors such as commercial trucking, experts say. Other challenges include data privacy and government regulation, with Tensilica IP's Ted Chua noting, "Safety is what government can control, and they will probably mandate certain things or incentivize the automakers to implement safety features."
Amazon will make its first foray into brick-and-mortar fashion retail with the opening of a store called Amazon Style in Los Angeles later this year. The 30,000-square-foot store will feature clothing, footwear and accessories from a range of brands, and shoppers will scan QR codes to either make a purchase or have pieces sent to a fitting room for them to try on.