The 14th Amendment Highway study was conducted by a team of consultants led by Cambridge Systematics, Inc. for the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), and was submitted to Congress pursuant to Section 1927 of the federal transportation authorization legislation known as SAFETEA-LU. This study is one of two companion studies authorized by SAFETEA-LU legislation. The studies focused on highway corridors originating in Georgia, and include the 14th Amendment Highway and the 3rd Infantry Division Highway.1
The 14th Amendment Highway is proposed to extend from Augusta, Georgia to Natchez, Mississippi, servicing intermediate cities of Macon and Columbus, Georgia, and Montgomery, Alabama. A portion of the highway corridor in Georgia was designated as a Congressional High Priority Corridor (HPC-6) under Section 1105 (c) of the Intermodal Surface Transportation and Efficiency Act (ISTEA) of 1991. The segment from Columbus to Macon was previously studied by the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) as part of the Governor's Roadway Improvement Program (GRIP).
The first stage of this study focused on preliminary data collection, identification of potential highway segments, alternative alignments and conceptual engineering designs for each segment, estimates of construction costs, and recommendations for additional planning studies to be conducted in an optional phase II as directed by FHWA.
Later project work from July through September focused on data collection, initial outreach activities, and definition of project control points in each of the key service and terminus cities. Engineering design work took place in the fall of 2010, and was followed by cost estimation work, and recommendations for further planning studies in the spring of 2011. The project was completed in June, 2011 and its findings were submitted to Congress.
No original data collection activities took place in this study. Existing data sources and reports were compiled, organized and analyzed. All work was reviewed and discussed by an Expert Working Group (EWG). The EWG consisted of nine members drawn from the three relevant state Departments of Transportation (DOTs) for Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi, and the Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) or their designees for the service cities. Additional representation was drawn from involved federal agencies. The EWG met four times during the course of the study at convenient locations within the project region.
1 A bill calling for the US DOT to study both the 3rd Infantry Division Highway and the "14th Amendment Highway" route was introduced in 2004 by members of the 108th Congress (2003-2005) Georgia delegation. The language of these two bills eventually became part of SAFETEA-LU.