The U.S. Department of Transportation announced a new funding program to fix thousands of bridges across the country.
Oklahoma is set to receive $266.9 million of the funding.
The Oklahoma Department of Transportation said it is excited to see the federal government follow its model of investing heavily into bridges.
The department said it has been investing in bridge infrastructure over the last 15 years. The new funding from the government, which will be allocated throughout the next five years, is expected to make an important impact.
"Oklahoma always wants to have the best infrastructure that we can provide for our citizens for the resources we got," Oklahoma Secretary of Transportation Tim Gatz said. "We're top 10 right now in bridge infrastructure, and we want to stay that way. The support of government and these dollars will help us with that."
Currently, Oklahoma has 65 to 67 structurally deficient bridges. Gatz said that number is down from 1,168.
"We made huge progress, but at the same time, we have almost 1,200 bridges that are 80 years old, so our job is not done," Gatz said.
In addition, 15% of the $266 million will be used for off-system bridges. Those are the kinds of bridges on the county road and street systems.
The funding will be a huge contributing factor to the needs of ODOT's eight-year construction plan that was recently approved in October. The plan includes hundreds of new highway and infrastructure projects that are already currently in construction.
If you would like to view ODOT's construction plan, click here.