09/01/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 09/01/2021 13:05
September 1, 2021
HIGHGATE SPRINGS, Vt. -- Today, U.S. General Services Administration Administrator Robin Carnahan joined Senator Patrick Leahy (Vermont) at the Highgate Springs Land Port of Entry to discuss the importance of infrastructure investments to Vermont's economy and communities. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal, which passed the Senate on August 10th, will make historic job-creating investments in infrastructure, including roads, bridges, railroads and land ports of entry such as Highgate Springs.
'These are much-needed and long-overdue investments in our economy and for the American people -- and the facility here at Highgate Springs is a prime example of the positive impact these investments will have on communities across the country,' said Administrator Carnahan. 'The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal and the Build Back Better Agenda will create millions of good-paying jobs, including many for union members, while reducing pollution and combating climate change. We are looking forward to making investments, like the modernization at Highgate Springs, that are so important for our country's prosperity and security.'
'As a native Vermonter I know that the border we share with Canada is a tremendous asset, and one that has shaped the history and culture of our state,' said Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. 'So I am especially pleased to join Administrator Carnahan today to announce that the significant funding we included for GSA in the infrastructure bill would invest more than $285 million across five ports of Vermont.'
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal includes more than $3 billion for GSA to build or modernize more than 30 land ports of entry, including five land ports of entry in Vermont. GSA is also working with Congress to include funding in the Build Back Better plan to address its building repair backlog of almost 100 projects across the country, which will transform the government's real estate footprint, improving energy efficiency and resilience to climate change while cutting long-term costs. In addition to modernizing critical infrastructure, the Administration is also driving the rapid electrification of the transportation sector. With Congress's support of the Build Back Better agenda, GSA will be able to install 82,000 charging stations across the country and convert 164,000 government vehicles to zero emission.
Highgate Springs is one of the busiest land ports of entry in New England. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the traffic volume at this crossing was over 475,000 privately owned vehicles and 97,000 trucks annually. Vermont's 13 land ports of entry account for more than $2.2 billion worth of goods traded between the United States and Canada each year.
The proposed Highgate Springs Land Port of Entry capital project will include a new 117,000 gross square foot facility that is better equipped to handle such commerce. The new facility is particularly needed due to the anticipated completion of Canadian Auto-Route 35 in 2025, which will connect to Interstate 89 at Highgate Springs. The new land port of entry will improve public and officer safety, as well as expedite crossing times for the travelling public and businesses. Land Ports of Entry projects such as the one at Highgate Springs are also an opportunity to advance GSA's commitment to decarbonizing the federal footprint and powering operations with carbon pollution-free electricity.
More information about the impact of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act for Vermont is available here.
About GSA: GSA provides centralized procurement for the Federal Government, managing a nationwide real estate portfolio of nearly 370 million rentable square feet and overseeing approximately $75 billion in annual contracts. GSA's mission is to deliver the best value in real estate, acquisition, and technology services across government, in support of the Biden-Harris Administration's priorities. For more information, visitGSA.govand follow us at@USGSA.