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MAP-21 - Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century

Home / MAP-21 / Fact Sheets / Significant Freight Provisions

This MAP-21 fact sheet has been superseded by a FAST Act fact sheet.

Significant Freight Provisions


MAP-21 includes a number of provisions to improve the condition and performance of the national freight network and support investment in freight-related surface transportation projects.

Statutory citation(s): MAP-21 §1115-1118, 1201-1203, 1401, 1510-1511, 32801-32802; SAFETEA-LU §1301; 23 USC 127, 133-135, 148-150, 167


National freight policy

Establishes a policy to improve the condition and performance of the national freight network to provide the foundation for the United States to compete in the global economy and achieve goals related to economic competitiveness and efficiency; congestion; productivity; safety, security, and resilience of freight movement; infrastructure condition; use of advanced technology; performance, innovation, competition, and accountability in the operation and maintenance of the network; and environmental impacts. [§1115; 23 USC 167]

National freight network

Requires DOT to establish a national freight network to assist States in strategically directing resources toward improved movement of freight on highways. The national freight network will consist of three components:

  1. (1) a primary freight network (PFN), as designated by the Secretary,
  2. (2) any portions of the Interstate System not designated as part of the PFN, and
  3. (3) critical rural freight corridors.

DOT must designate the PFN within one year of enactment of MAP-21. When initially designated, the PFN may contain a maximum of 27,000 centerline miles of existing roadways that are most critical to the movement of freight. DOT may add to the PFN up to 3,000 additional centerline miles of roads critical to future efficient movement of goods on the PFN. States will designate the critical rural freight corridors using criteria contained in MAP-21 [§1115; 23 USC 167]

National freight strategic plan

Directs DOT to, within three years of enactment of MAP-21, develop a national freight strategic plan in consultation with States and other stakeholders, and to update the plan every five years. The plan must –

Freight data, planning, and reporting

Directs DOT to develop or improve data and tools to support an outcome-oriented, performance-based approach to evaluating proposed transportation projects.

Directs DOT to consider improvements to existing freight flow data collection. [§1115; 23 USC 167]

Freight conditions and performance report

Requires DOT to prepare a biennial report describing the condition and performance of the national freight network. [§1115; 23 USC 167]

Prioritization of projects to improve freight movement

Authorizes DOT to allow a maximum Federal share of 95% for an Interstate System project (or of 90% for a non-Interstate System project) if the project makes a demonstrable improvement in the efficiency of freight movement and is identified in a State freight plan (as described in section 1118 of MAP-21). [§1116]

State freight advisory committees and freight plans

Requires DOT to encourage each State to establish a freight advisory committee composed of a representative cross-section of public- and private-sector freight stakeholders. [§1117]

Requires DOT to encourage each State to develop a comprehensive plan for its immediate and long-range freight-related planning and investment. [§1118]

Changes in freight eligibility under grant and loan programs

(For additional detail, see the program-specific fact sheets for each of these programs.)

Jason's Law

Makes construction of safety rest areas, commercial motor vehicle (CMV) parking facilities, electric vehicle and natural gas vehicle infrastructure eligible for Federal funding. Requires DOT to survey States within 18 months of enactment regarding their CMV traffic and capability to provide CMV parking. DOT must periodically update this survey, and must post the results on DOT's website. [§1401]

Compilation and Study of Truck Size and Weight Limits

Requires DOT, in consultation with States and other relevant Federal agencies, to report to Congress within two years of enactment on a comprehensive study of truck size and weight limits. [§32801]

Requires DOT to report to Congress within two years of enactment on a compilation of State limitations on the size and weight of trucks that may travel on the National Highway System. [§32802]

Idle Reduction Technology

Raises the truck weight exemption for idle reduction equipment from 400 to 550 lbs. [§1510; 23 USC 127]

Special Permits During Periods of National Emergency

Allows States to issue divisible load permits to overweight trucks exclusively carrying relief supplies for up to 120 days following a Presidential declaration of a major disaster. [§1511]

Metropolitan and Statewide Planning

Continues ability for freight shippers and providers of freight transportation services to participate in metropolitan and Statewide transportation planning processes. [§1201-1202; 23 USC 134(g)(3), 135(f)(3)]

Continues requirement that planning processes provide for consideration of projects and strategies to –


Within 18 months of enactment, requires DOT (within a broader rulemaking on performance) to establish measures for States to use to assess freight movement on the Interstate System. [§1203; 23 USC 150(c)]

Requires each State to set performance targets in relation to these measures and integrate the targets within its planning processes. States must also report periodically on their progress in relation to the targets and on how they are addressing congestion at freight bottlenecks. [§1201, 1203; 23 USC 135(d)(2), 135(f)(7), 150(d)-(e)]

Requires each MPO to set performance targets in relation to the freight measures, integrate these targets within their planning processes, and report periodically on their progress in relation to these targets. [§1201; 23 USC 134(h)(2), 134(i)(2)(C)]

(See "Performance Management" fact sheet.)

Additional Information

For additional information on the U.S. Department of Transportation's freight activities, see Press Release, "USDOT Secretary Ray LaHood Announces Creation of Freight Policy Council" and USDOT Freight Transportation.

Page last modified on September 12, 2013
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