i rn "f
—Wide World Photo
'l il Our entile ee ny depends oil
'utomotive transport. We are a nation
Our automotive transport system is
"'litallv an extension of our nation's
■'"'inl.lv lines. Our products come out
""' doors of the plants onto 1 links
"hich move across our interstate highway system, bringing these products
"to every state, v illage, and home.
Every delay because of highway con-
jjestion adds ;t few cents here, a few
''"Ileus there, in lln- cosl of everything
Our in.nls are' obsolete. Thev arc also
:' dangerous drag nn mir prosperity,
'hey interfere wilh the market for cars
lr"l Inn k-. By SO dning. they cut the
''''"i.uiil for edl the materials going into
'ilrs and trucks. Thev curl, the growth
"' "ur metropolitan areas. Hy so doing.
'"> iiirl. ihe growth of the economy
TRAFFIC DEATHS EXCEED WAR TOLL
'be human cosl is even greater,
'heady, we have' killed more than a
""'linn people in fifty years w iih autn-
'""l.il.-. Thirty million more have' been
"lured. The economic Inss from these
''' iilenis is close in three billion dollars,
'atomobile accidents have taken twice
,|S many American lives as wc have lost
111 'ill our wars. Anil the number injured
'" traffic accidents is twenty-five limes
."' number nf men wounded in wars
"""<■ the firsl minuteman fell al Lexing
lo" 17!, years aeo."
The problem continues to grow worse.
In 1051. there were fifty-eight million
tn..I..r vehicles registered in this country, li is estimated Lhal in 1965 we will
have eighty million registered vehicles
on our highways, anil that they will
I ravel 815 billion miles during lhal
If theii sounds appalling, jusl think of
1975 for then we must expect a registration of ninety-two million vehicles
which will travel an estimated trillion
miles a year.
That means, in simpler figures, that
for every two cars on tin- crowded
mads nf today, there will 1..' three cars
Traffic accidents will kill forty thousand Americans ihis year ami injure
The worst bottlenecks in our highway systems an' in the greal cities. Hen-
is where the most cosllv delays occur.
Traffic jams waste billions of man-
hours ei year eiml seriously interfere
with the' distribution of industrial
ROAD TO SURVIVAL JAMMED?
Suppose weir broke out tomorrow?
In this age' of the' H-bomb, there is
no longer safely in digging in. It will be
necessary to evacuate the great industrial lilies within range of the lied air
force'. II.iw could they possibly l.e evacuated when, even nn a normal peacetime
day, lite highways arc lammed?8
If the bomb ever comes, our chances
for survival will depend on our mobility
—the speed with which wc can evacuate
these urban areas ami the facility with
which we can shift our defense forces
and gel our battered industrial plemls
back into operation.
The bold, imaginative plan for highways proposed by President Eisenhower
is indeed welcome in this critical time.
II shows thai he is aware of the necessity fe>r em adequate highway system in
ineit not only wartime needs, but peacetime needs as well.
A huge increase in road building is
necessary if the national economy is to
continue expansion if the nation's liv
ing standards are to continue upward.
Future highwa) construction must he
planned to serve- an economy which the
Presidenl heis estimated will rise to 500
billion dollars worth of goods and services annually within ten years.
This highwa) construction musl be
planned far in advance', with em eve
loward future rather than present needs,
if we are lo avoid our past mistakes.
The plan proposed l.v the Presidenl ami
his advisers le.nks ahead lo lhe needs
of 1975. vvith its estimated ninety-two
The best pari of the plan is lhat it
can I"' paid fnr withoul increasing
taxes, without increasing the national
eli l.t. without increasing federal appro
It will, in fact, actually save the
p.e.pie- of tlie United Stales fifty billion
dollars over the next ten years."
Here's how il works. Under the 1951
Federal-Aid Highway .Ad. lln- govern-
menl is committed to spend 965 million
dollars on federal highway aid for lhe
year ending June. 1956. This appropriation is jusl about equal lo the gaso
line and oil taxes ihe government collects and funnels into lite United Slales
The' Presidenl will use a part of lhe-.
federal-aid funds to finance the new
program'. A Federal corporation will Inset up to issue bonds for the ten-year
pie.jeai. One-third of the federal aid
funds collected from gasoline ami oil
taxes will pay the interest and amorti/a
lion on lhe bonds.
In simpler language, ihis is a kind
nf pay-as-you-use plan—a proposal in
make tomorrow's traffic pay for the
highways ii will l.e using -highways
which are planned and built today to
accommodate the traffic of tomorrow.
Where does lhe fifty billion dollars
saving come in? From the decreased
.-..■I- nf operation of trucks and automobiles. Eisenhower's advisory committee
has pointed nut thai the reci nended
improvements to our road system will
cut vehicle operating costs a cent a
mile—a national seiving of fifty billion
dollars in ten years."
This js probably an understatement
of the actual savings to be realized from
the improved highway system.
\n adequate highway system will
mean a savings of billions of man
Jobs would be provided for many
thousands of construction workers.
Companies selling cement, steel, ami
(Continued mi Pttge 23)
FORUM NEWS. May, 1955
—Wide World Pholo
President Eisenhower is shown receiving
from retired General Lucius Clay recommendations for a 1 01-billion-dollar federal-state
highway program. The President and Clay
hold a map of a "strategic network" of interstate highways. Clay is chairman of a presidential advisory committee which drew up
the proposed program.