xt7cfx73z16j https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt7cfx73z16j/data/mets.xml Federal Works Agency, Work Projects Administration Works Progress Administration Transportation Publications Federal Works Agency, Work Projects Administration 1940 1 sheet: illustrations 43 x 30 cm folded to 23 x 11 cm UK holds archival copy for ASERL Collaborative Federal Depository Program libraries. Call Number: FW 4.2:R 53 books  English Washington, D.C.: Federal Works Agency, Work Projects Administration  This digital resource may be freely searched and displayed in accordance with U. S. copyright laws. Works Progress Administration Transportation Publications Roads -- United States Public works -- United States Public Roads and the WPA, 1940 text Public Roads and the WPA, 1940 1940 1940 2021 true xt7cfx73z16j section xt7cfx73z16j  

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hough the U. S. A. has nearly a third of all the road
Tmileage in the world, most of our roads are still
horse—and—buggy roads. Some 1,800,000 miles of our
3,000,000—mile total are unimproved rural roads which
become badly clogged, if not impa able, after every
storm or thaw. Many of our city streets are unfit for
the high—speed, heavy motor traffic of today.

This situation would be considerably worse without
the help given by the Work Projects Administration to
communities and rural areas in evervpart of the nation.
By putting the unemployed to \ k on road projec s,
the \VPA has made it poss1ble for State and local
governments to build or improve over 457,000 miles of
roads. That is one—seventh of all our road .


hen bad weather turns our back-country roads into
“sloughs,” 17,000,000 people, or over half of our
farm population, are affected. Many of them are
temporarily isolated Medical aid may not be ob-
tained when needc , hildren may lose weeks of school—
ing; and social and recreational activities are sharpl ' ,
curtailed. “lorst of all, it is difficult or imp sible to ’ ' ‘ . _ i , , ‘ " , , - I‘MWV/
take produce to market. . n.) w / ,1 V' ’ ’ y , 0 “(war 1;)”;
More TVPA workers have been engaged in the task of ' I i I
“pulling the farmer out of the mud” than on any other
kind of project. They have built or improved over
400,000 miles of farm—to-market and other rural
roads. They have directly benefited over 3,500,000
men, women, and children, living on 750,000 farms, by
giving them a more permanent link to the outside world.


Cobblestones and traffic tangles are as costly and V )1-
ing to city motorists as mudholes to farmers. So the
WPA has helped nearly every city in the nation to
streamline and widen its thoroughfares. W'PA workers
have built or improved over 49,000 miles of urban
streets and alleys, and over 7,000 miles of roads through
parks and similar public areas.

therever there have been workers unemployed and
road work to be done, the WPA has brought the
workers and the work fogethc .





Failure or SUCCESS in farming depends not only on the
farmer’s skill and the fertility of his soil but on his

contact with the outside world. Unimproved dirt lanes ’1 l9}

twist past many an abandoned farm and rural slum.
When WPA workers turn these lanes into all—weather
roads, the countryside revives. Land values rise, and
farm families that seemed doomed to poverty are given
an opportunity to improve their condition.

“WPA farm—to-market roads,” a Southern State re—
ports, “have opened new avenues of commerce and
agriculture in localities which had previously been shut
off from the world by impassable trails.”

Growing traffic congestion has emphasized the need for
better streets in thousands of cities that are unable to
obtain them without VVPA help.

Street work done by project workers ranges all the
way from laying pavements of asphalt or concrete to
improving dirt streets that serve suburban homes. It
includes the replacement of worn—out and inadequate
surfaces, and repaving after the removal of car tracks;
also the widening of main thoroughfares and construc-
tion of grade separations at busy intersections.

Tiis work has done much to eliminate driving haz-
ards and speed up the flow of traffic in our cities.


Ignorance or education is a choice which few American
children need make. In many sparsely settled areas,
however, the only education available for children of all
ages is that offered by one teacher in an old-fashioned
one—room school. \Vlien roads are choked with mud or
snow, it is hard for children to Walk to school.

VVPA all-weather roads have enabled thousands of
rural communities to send their children by bus to
central, consolidated schools. Better education is the
result; and from this our cities as well as our farms will
benefit, since the cities look to the farms of today for
their population of tomorrow.

Modern street construction means more than providing a
broad, smooth driving surface. It means also provid-
ing related facilities which are equally important in
this motor age. Safety islands and other traffic guides
must be constructed, and light standards erected.
Street signs, so plain that he who drives may read, are
needed, too. Gutters and curbs have to be built or
reconstructed, and sidewalks laid.

All of these phases of modern street construction
are included in the work done by VVPA workers. The
result is greater safety and convenience both for
motorists and for pedestrians.

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Bid or new ways of life for the farmer depend on his
bridges as well as his roads. Bridges too narrow for
cars to pass on them and fords unfordable at high water
keep him living in the ways of the past.

PA roads and bridges have brought 20th-century
civilization to the backwoods and wide open spaces.
They have hastened the development of small towns
into modern community centers where thefarmer and
his wife can do their shopping, go to the movies, send
their children to high school, and take an active part in
grange and church work. They mean a more abundant
life for every member of the farmer’s family.

our great highways are built and imprm d with W’PA
funds as well as with funds made avail ble through the
Public Roads Administration. Most State highway
departments have sponsored \VPA road projects.

Thus WPA workers have worked on all types of roads,
from multiple-lane thoroughfares to “feeders.” More
than two-fifths of all W'PA workers have been employed
on road work of one kind or another.

\VPA workers are doing work that would not other—
wise be done for years to come. They are helping to
make America’s road system the best as well as the
biggest in the world.



 Before the WPA comes to his aid, many a farmer sees his profits reduced
by hours of driving in low gear over bad roads. Sometimes, with
perishable produce to sell, he loses it through spoilage because he can-
not get to market. He is mud-bound as often as he is snow»bound.

Alter \VPA road work is done, the farmer can speed to town at will.
This work includes straightening and broadening the road, reducing
steep grades, providing adequate drainage, building culverts and
bridges, and surfacing the road (with local materials if possible).


Roads- 457,734 miles built or improved, including 400,887 miles of rural,
49,703 miles of urban, and 7,084 miles of other roads.

Bridges and viaducts. 55,934 new, and 37,020 improved.
Culverts. 673,233 new, and 84,437 improved.

Roadside drainage. 42,004 miles of new drainage ditches and pipes,
and 08,193 miles improved.

Sidewalks and paths. 15,341 miles built. and 5,470 miles improved.
curbs- 14,403 miles built, and 2,088 miles improved.

GUtlerS- 4,100 miles built, and 023 miles improved.

Guardrails and guardwalls. 1,705 miles built, 854 miles improved.
Street lighting. 21,690 new light standards, 55,312 improved.
Traffic signs. 033,340 erected.

Roadside landscaping. 40,001 miles.


Public buildings. 23,003 erected, 02,468 renovated, and 2,784 additions
built. These include schools, libraries, administrative and recreational
buildings, hospitals, fire houses, armories, etc.

Airports. 197 new, 337 improved, and 35 additions built.

Water and sewer systems. 12,303 miles otwatcr lines and 13,241 miles of
sewers built or improved.

Dams. 1,863 storage dams built, 201 improved; also 25,548 dams built
for erosion control and general conservation, 706 improved.

Recreational areas and facilities. some 21,500 parks, playgrounds, and
athletic fields built or improved; aiid 16,500 recreational facilities, includ-
ing swimming pools, golf courses, tennis courts, skating rinks, ski Jumps,
outdoor theaters and bandshells.

Ground improvements. Nearly 78,000 acres of public grounds, other than
parks, landscaped.

Educational workers have. conducted over 100,000 classes a month, with
average monthly attendance of some 1,250,000 people.

Library workers have established thousands of new branch libraries,
traveling libraries, and reading rooms. Last_ December they were
operating or assisting to operate 9,600 library units.

Recraational workers have operated and assisted to operate thousands of
community centers and supervised recreational actiVlties totaling as
much as 15,000,000 participant-hours per week.

Al’liSlS have conducted art classes with average monthly attendance of
50,000; operated civic art centers with aggregate attendance of 7,000,000;
produced some 223,000 art objects.

MUSICiBDS have conducted music classes with average monthly attend-
ance of150,000, and given an average of 4,400 muslcal performances a
month with average monthly attendance of 3,000,000.

Writers have completed 418 books and pamphlets, mostly guidebooks.
Survey workers have preserved many thousands of valuable records from
neglect, decay, and destruction.

Medical, dental, and nursing servrces have been provided for millions of
adults and children unable to pay for them.

Workers on school lunch projects have prepared and served over
380,000,000 meals to undernourished children.

Housekeeping aides have made over 17,000,000 visits to help poor families
stricken by illness, injury, or other misfortune.

Women on SGWiDE Proleliis have made 284,709,000 garments and house-
hold articlcs for needy families and public institutions.
Workers on canning projects have canned 43,333.000 quarts and dried
1,080,000 pounds or food for distribution to the needy.


All accomplishment figures, unless otherwise stated, cot‘er 41/13 yours
of IVPA operation—from July 1.935 to December 1939, inclusioe.


JOHN M. CARMODY, Administrator

F. C. HARRINGTON, Commissioner

July1940 16—16413 u. 5. GOVERNMENT murmur; OFFICE



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