Holiday weekends are often full of family, friends and fun. Unfortunately, they're also typically full of traffic jams. In advance of the Fourth of July, therefore, the U.S. Travel Association has partnered with Building America's Future -- a bipartisan coalition of pro-infrastructure politicians -- to launch a co-branded mobile app for travelers who are stuck in traffic.
Called "I'm Stuck," the new app connects travelers to lawmakers, urging them to take immediate action to upgrade the nation's aging transportation infrastructure by replenishing the Highway Trust Fund. The country's main source of funding for roads, bridges and highways, the fund will run out of money later this summer unless federal lawmakers agree on a solution for funding it.
"Our partnership couldn't come at a more critical time," Ed Rendell, former governor of Pennsylvania and co-chair of Building America's Future, said in a statement. "The Highway Trust Fund is running on fumes and Congress is running out of time. Our app gives the American people the ability to send a clear message directly to their member of Congress: act now."
The "I'm Stuck" app works by allowing constituents to message their U.S. representatives and senators whenever they're stuck in traffic on the highway, delayed on a bus or train, or sitting on an airport tarmac. They can send one of several available automated messages, and even send photos of the traffic jam taken with their smartphone. By doing so, users can add a human face to infrastructure issues.
"The American traveler's voice in Washington just got a lot louder," said U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Roger Dow. "Congress has known about our infrastructure needs for a long time -- and yet has failed to act. Much like Foursquare invites you to 'check-in' when you've arrived at your destination, I'm Stuck will alert lawmakers to journeys that are too often plagued with delays that leave travelers sitting in travel purgatory. Now there's a simple way to urge Congress to find sensible solutions to these critical national priorities."
The app, which is available for both iPhone and Android, can be downloaded from the Building America's Future website.