Congressman Cohen Welcomes Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg to Memphis to Assess Damage to Hernando DeSoto Bridge
MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09), a senior member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, today welcomed a decision by Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg to come to Memphis on Thursday, June 3, to assess the disruption to traffic caused by the closure of the Hernando DeSoto-Interstate 40 bridge over the Mississippi River.
“I'm gratified Secretary Pete accepted my invitation to visit Memphis and assess the damage to the I-40 bridge. I welcome his hands-on approach and look forward to working together to repair our infrastructure and reopen one of the nation's busiest freight corridors after a crack was discovered in the bridge.”
Congressman Cohen invited Secretary Buttigieg – known better as “Secretary Pete” – to review the major transportation disruption affecting transportation in the Mid-South and in the nation’s third busiest freight corridor in a letter on May 13. Congressman Cohen noted the importance of the bridge in interstate commerce, part of a network that includes five Class 1 railroads, the fifth largest inland port and FedEx’s distribution hub.
In his letter to the Secretary, Congressman Cohen said in part:
“The closure of this important supply chain artery demonstrates the immediate need for the American Jobs Plan and ambitious investments in our nation’s aging infrastructure. Therefore, I highly encourage you to visit Memphis at your earliest convenience so you can see first-hand the damage of the I-40 Hernando DeSoto bridge and the devastating effects it is having on our distribution network.”
See the entire letter here.
Congressman Cohen exchanged ideas with Secretary Buttigieg at a Transportation and Infrastructure oversight hearing in March, detailing important transportation issues for Memphis before the crack in the bridge was discovered earlier this month.