The Federal Highway Administration has turned down a request from the state of Rhode Island to install tolls on Interstate 95, just over the border from Connecticut. Rhode Island had applied for one of three projects around the country seeking to use tolls as a way to fund highway improvements, but the money reserved for the third project is now destined for North Carolina. The other two projects are in Virginia and Missouri.
A spokeswoman at the federal agency says planning for the North Carolina project was farther along than the Rhode Island proposal. She says the money is merely “reserved” for North Carolina, and if the work there falls through, the FHWA could reopen the case.
Congressman Joe Courtney says Rhode Island’s proposal would have added to congestion in Southeastern Connecticut, and would have caused problems on local roads as drivers tried to avoid the tolls.