Press Release: Gov. Evers, WisDOT Celebrate $8 Million Federal Grant to Help Support Trucking Industry

Office of Governor Tony Evers
Gov. Evers, WisDOT Celebrate $8 Million Federal Grant to Help Support Trucking Industry
MADISON — Gov. Tony Evers today celebrated an $8 million federal grant awarded to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) to reconstruct a safety rest area near Sparta. The grant, awarded by the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT), will fund a project to significantly expand truck parking at a key facility serving traffic from Madison, Milwaukee, and Chicago on I-90 westbound to La Crosse, Rochester, and beyond.

“The nationwide challenges facing our trucking industry are placing an undue burden on our hardworking truck drivers as they deliver the critical goods and services that we all depend upon,” said Gov. Evers. “We’re working with Sen. Tammy Baldwin and our federal partners to help alleviate some of those concerns on this critical freight and passenger route through Western Wisconsin.”

“The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is delivering for Wisconsin communities in every corner of the state, including making long overdue upgrades for the infrastructure drivers depend on. The I-90 corridor keeps Wisconsin families, businesses, and commerce moving forward, and it’s critical we invest in the waypoints that keep our roads safe,” said Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisconsin). “An upgraded rest stop near Sparta will improve safety, accessibility, and capacity for the truckers, travelers, and commuters who rely on I-90, and I am proud to bring home this investment.”

Commercial truck parking demand significantly exceeds truck parking capacity across the country, resulting in drivers parking on highway ramps and shoulders. This project increases truck parking capacity from 16 to approximately 70 spots, adds a staging area for oversized-overweight vehicles, and leverages technology to proactively communicate open truck parking spots to commercial drivers moving along I-90 through Sparta.

The project will also reconstruct and modernize one of the state’s oldest safety rest areas, which serves more than 410 vehicles each day. Deteriorated ramps and pavement will be fixed, ADA-compliant restrooms with adult changing tables will be constructed, and improved amenities will be available, including paved walking paths, updated lighting, and a pet walking area.

“Thanks to Sen. Baldwin and Gov. Evers’ leadership, WisDOT will be able to deliver a more welcoming safety rest area that meets the needs of all travelers,” said WisDOT Secretary Craig Thompson. “We’re ready to get to work to modernize this outdated and undersized facility that will provide economic and quality of life benefits for all who use it.”

The funding was awarded through USDOT’s Nationally Significant Multimodal Freight and Highway Projects program (INFRA) as part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which was supported by Sen. Baldwin and signed into law by President Joe Biden in November 2021.
An online version of this release is available here.