BERTRAM D. TALLAMY
1957 — 1961
Federal Highway Administrator
Engineer — Builder — Public — Executive
Bertram D. Tallamy was an advocate of esthetic design in the Interstate System.
In administering the Interstate System, Mr. Tallamy wanted it fashioned after the New York Thruway, which in 1957 was generally regarded as one of the most magnificent highways ever constructed. Mr. Tallamy wanted motorists to see the country, to enjoy the scenery and, above all, to avoid monotony. All these things, he said, could be accomplished with an added safety factor without adding to the cost. He also was in favor of regulated outdoor advertising throughout the Interstate System.
The first Senate-confirmed Federal Highway Administrator, Mr. Tallamy was born and bred to the engineering and construction fields. Both his father and grandfather were general contractors.
His early construction training was with a firm that specialized in the fields of waterworks, dams, sewage treatment plants, roads, and bridges.
From the early thirties he progressed through various posts to where he was appointed Superintendent of Public Works in October 1948. In 1950, he became Chairman of the New York State Thruway Authority, overseeing $928.5 million in construction costs for New York State in 1954 alone.