Iowa approves $3.6bn transportation plan for next five years

The Iowa Transportation Commission in the US approved a nearly $3.6bn transportation improvement programme for the fiscal year period 2021-2025.

The programme comprises investments in public transit, highways, railroads, trails and aviation to strengthen the state’s multimodal transportation system.

It listed a more than $2bn investment over five years to upgrade Iowa’s existing highway system. Primarily, the funding will be used to modernise the highway network and install new safety features.

Australia to invest $687m to improve road infrastructure in NSW

The federal and New South Wales (NSW) governments in Australia agreed to jointly invest A$1bn ($687m) to improve road infrastructure in the state.

Around A$398m was allocated for road safety projects in regional areas, supporting 950 direct and indirect jobs.

Another A$382m will be awarded to local councils to upgrade roads, while A$240m will be invested to fix 11 congestion hotspots around Sydney.

DiDi raises more than $500m for autonomous driving unit

China’s Didi Chuxing (DiDi) raised more than $500m for its autonomous driving subsidiary through a fundraising round.

The round was led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2.

In a statement, DiDi said that this was the first time that its autonomous driving business had secured external funding.

World Bank allocates $500m for road improvement work in Bangladesh

The World Bank allocated $500m for road improvement work along the Jashore-Jhenaidah corridor in western Bangladesh.

The international financial institution is supporting a $1.4bn programme to convert the 110km two-lane road, Bhomra-Satkhira-Navaron and Jahore-Jhenaidah, to a four-lane highway.

The reconstructed highway will also feature additional lanes for slow-moving vehicles and a median safety barrier.

World Bank approves $450m to improve road infrastructure in Nepal

The World Bank approved a $450m project that seeks to improve road infrastructure in Nepal to facilitate connectivity and improve cross-border trade.

The grant came at a time when the South-Asian country was working to revive its economy following the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

World Bank Country Manager for Nepal Faris Hadad-Zervos said: “In the context of Covid-19, protecting people’s lives is the priority, and giving a fillip to economic recovery is equally urgent.

Queensland starts $331m Bruce Highway upgrade project work

The Government of Queensland in Australia announced that upgrade work worth A$481m ($331.07m) commenced on a section of the Bruce Highway.

Stage III of the Cairns Southern Access Corridor project will increase the capacity of a two-lane road between Edmonton and Gordonvale. It is expected to support 466 jobs.

New highway alignment and an overpass south of Maitland Road will be delivered under the project. The work also includes the removal of several at-grade level crossings and aims to mitigate congestion on the freight route.

Ferrovial’s Webber secures $301m contract from TxDOT

Webber, a US subsidiary of Spanish infrastructure group Ferrovial, secured a $301m contract from the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT).

Under the terms of the contract, Webber will be responsible for the reconstruction of existing interchanges between State Loop 12, State Spur 482, State Highway 114 and 183.

The company will also construct 32 new bridges, as well as enhance the existing main lanes and carry out additional works such as grading, signals and illumination of the highway.

Uzbekistan secures $165.5m loan to improve road infrastructure

Uzbekistan became set to receive a loan of $165.5m to improve road infrastructure in the Bukhara region.

The loan amount, approved by the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, will be used to advance the Bukhara Road Network Improvement Project.

Phase I of the project involves renovating a 78km section of the international road A380 in the region.