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Congressman Hank Johnson

Representing the 4th District of Georgia

Perimeter Business Alliance Luncheon, Oct, 17, 2014 | Villa Christina

March 5, 2015
Speech

By now we have all heard the news of the tragic loss of Governor Deal’s staffer, Mack Burgess in an accident earlier this week.  Toby Carr and many others are attending his funeral today, which necessitated a change in the program.  Our sincerest condolences go out to the family and friends.

I am honored to pinch hit because I have championed PCIDs’ efforts and been a partner with them since their inception 14 years ago.

The successful model of the PCIDs is attributed to the leadership of the board and staff and the innovative solutions executed to advance much-needed infrastructure projects.

As a Congressman, I agreed to support of the I-285 at 400 partnership without hesitation.  This bi-partisan effort is a true testament to what can happen when we work together and focus on maximizing resources to their highest capability and use.

The $ 710 million package to improve the I-285 at 400 interchange and the Georgia 400 corridor Collector Distributor system is a bold plan – in fact, it is the largest surface transportation project in our state’s history – with statewide significance alongside the Port of Savannah project at $ 706 million.  

The project will also make life easier for commuters and businesses in my district and across the metro Atlanta region. This makes for a complete strategic logistics plan -- moving goods, services and people within our network of transportation assets.  Now that the I-285 400 system has gained Federal Highway approval for environmental status we are on our way to achieve construction goals in 2016, which will advance the federal funding package for the project.

I am pleased to see the announcement of State Farm bringing 10,000 jobs to Perimeter, and their use of the Dunwoody Marta station… this is the new urban footprint of live/work/play and a maximization of our transit assets. I am a firm believer that transit connectivity has the ability to maximize job growth centers for the next generation of millennials at the transit stations. Perimeter is endowed with four transit stations.

As a previous DeKalb County Commissioner and now Congressman, I have valued the regional aspect of Perimeter as the center where cross jurisdictional partners collaborate to achieve success. I will spend my time in Congress making sure we are highlighting a model of success that includes:

•    Supporting local connectivity to statewide transportation networks

•    Maximizing the value of Georgia’s transportation assets

•    Reduction of congestion and improvement of the efficiency and reliability of daily commutes

•    Minimizing the impact of transportation on the environment

•    Improving access to jobs which encourage growth in private sector employment

•    Ensuring the safety and security of employees and residents

We need to find the RIGHT formula for Georgia to raise adequate revenue to fund its transportation needs to meet the growing demands of population and business. I am hopeful the joint legislative study committee for transportation will offer innovative funding tools as part of their future funding package.

These endeavors will entail a bipartisan approach to practical solutions which tie strategic goals to funding sources. Keeping private sector partners at the helm of our innovation builds that success. The Perimeter CIDs are the model.  

We have talked about improvements through planning processes for over two decades.  Now is the time to implement strategic initiatives designed to maintain competiveness and productivity.

It is with great pride I can point to Perimeter as the DeKalb corporate region and see results of such vision and persistent efficient delivery of infrastructure which has made a difference in our national economy.

Thank you.

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