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By Hartsville Vidette Staff Reporter

U.S. Rep. Diane Black introduced her plan last week to take steps to address traffic congestion in Middle Tennessee, which she said could be done without raising taxes on middle-class families.

Black’s plan came after voters in Davidson County defeated a transit plan by a vote of nearly 2-to-1 on May 1.

“Traffic is a problem that needs to be addressed in this region,” Black said in a press statement. “The real solution is completing existing road projects and funneling commercial interstate traffic outside of commuter areas. We also need to recognize that this is not just a Davidson County problem. This is a regional problem, and we need all the counties in the area to come together and work on a regional master plan.”

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Diane Black represents Tennessee’s Sixth District in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Black’s plan to address traffic in Middle Tennessee consists of the following steps:

Convene Middle Tennessee counties to develop a master plan for the entire region. This would include Davidson County, Williamson County, Rutherford County, Wilson County, Sumner County, Robertson County, Montgomery County, Cheatham County, Maury County and Dickson County.

Complete I-840 to the North of Nashville so that commercial traffic can avoid downtown Nashville and stop clogging up roads for commuters.

Prioritize road projects and go all in to finish them instead of having dozens and dozens of projects that take too long to complete.

Incentivize quicker completion of all road projects – right now we penalize for slower completion.

Re-think design and architecture of on and off ramps.

Determine which engineering services should be done in-house at TDOT and which should be bid out to the private sector.

Double-stack the Interstates (65-40-24) as they pass through the downtown Nashville corridor.

Add a third lane to interstates in rural areas.

“Driving from Lebanon to Cookeville during high-volume windows can be just as hectic as downtown Nashville because the interstate is only two lanes,” Black said in her press statement.

Support President Trump’s infrastructure plan and work with the Trump Administration to get additional funding to complete infrastructure projects in Tennessee.

Black is running for the Republican nomination for governor in the August primary.