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A Look at the History of the Federal Highway Administration
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April 23
1921 The 9th Annual Convention of the U.S. Good Roads Association and the Bankhead Highway Association closes its 6-day meeting in Greensboro, NC. Chief Thomas MacDonald delivered an address on road construction under the Federal-aid plan ("more or less of a statistical and technical nature but very illuminating," according to one reporter). Also during the convention, Senator J. Thomas Heflin of Alabama reviewed the benefits of the Federal-aid plan, while Senator Charles E. Townsend of Michigan denounced Federal-aid as a "pork barrel system" and asked for support of his bill for creating a national highway commission to build a national highway system. The convention endorsed "the Federal and State co-operative plan."
1963 A public hearing is held in Wilmington, NC, regarding the State Highway Commission's request for a permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for a bridge across the Cape Fear River. Although considerable opposition is registered, BPR representatives strongly recommend approval. The Corps later issued the permit. Construction begins in December 1965, and the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge, the first lift span in the State, is dedicated and opened on October 20, 1969, honoring the men and women of NC who gave their lives in the service of their country.
1969 In the FAA Auditorium, Secretary of Transportation John Volpe addresses FHWA's 2-day Equal Opportunity Workshop. Participants include engineers assigned EEO responsibilities in the 50 States and DC as well as Regional EEO Officers. They discuss methods by which FHWA can carry out its responsibilities for equal opportunity under Executive Order 1246, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1968.
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