By Justin Sink - 07/17/14 06:00 AM EDT
President Obama will unveil a new federal initiative to help cities and states find private financing for transportation infrastructure during a trip to Delaware on Thursday.
The announcement comes as the White House looks to ratchet up pressure on Congress, which this week is debating a short-term fix to the rapidly depleting highway trust fund that underwrites road and mass transit construction.
Obama will speak at the Port of Wilmington in front of the I-495 Bridge, which is undergoing substantial structural repairs. Some 90,000 cars moved across the bridge every day before construction began.
"The President’s visit and announcement today are a part of the Administration’s continued push to highlight the importance of investing in our nation’s infrastructure so that we can build on the progress our economy is making by creating jobs and expanding opportunity for all hardworking Americans," a White House official said.
Under the plan to be unveiled by Obama, The Department of Transportation will open a new investment center designed to serve as a "one-stop shop" for state and local governments seeking private loans to underwrite construction projects, according to a White House official.
The center is also designed to provide technical assistance and guidance to governments seeking access to federal credit programs and private capital.
The president will also order the creation of an interagency working group, chaired by Transportation Secretary Anthony FoxxAnthony FoxxFeds require new safeguards for railroad employees Uber to spend M to meet demand during Metro maintenance Virginia gov threatens to withhold DC Metro funding MORE and Treasury Secretary Jack LewJack LewCEO group urges Congress to act on proposed tax rules IRS doubted legality of ObamaCare payments, former official says Overnight Finance: GOP makes its case for impeaching IRS chief | Clinton hits Trump over housing crash remarks | Ryan's big Puerto Rico win MORE, that will undertake "a focused review" on how the government can "expand and increase private investment and collaboration in infrastructure."
In addition, the Treasury Department will host an infrastructure investment summit in September designed to match institutional investors, developers, and local governments.