A U.S. representative in charge of authorizing hundreds of billions of dollars in federal funds for infrastructure improvements visited the City of Robstown last week.
U.S. Rep. James Oberstar, the chairman of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, was in Robstown at the invitation of U.S. Rep. Solomon Ortiz to hear different presentations on local transportation projects.
Officials from Nueces and San Patricio counties attended the meeting, as did representatives from the Metropolitan Planning Organization, Port of Corpus Christi, Regional Transportation Authority and the Texas Department of Transporation.
Oberstar, from Minnesota, is going to be responsible for legislation that will authorize about $500 billion in federal funds for public transportation and highway projects.
Ortiz said Oberstar took a tour around Robstown and was amazed at the large number of projects currently taking place, including the proposed inland port and U.S. Army storage facility.
"He was surprised to see that this is a hub, Robstown is a hub, for transportation," Ortiz said. "When he saw that (U.S. Highway) 77 and (State Highway) 44 criss-cross each other, and the same thing with the railroad…he was amazed."
With so many cities and counties pushing for federal funds, Ortiz said the visit can only benefit the area, since it gave Oberstar a chance to see the transportation needs firsthand.
"I think that the chances are very, very good," Ortiz said, adding that Oberstar visited the county airport in Robstown.
Robstown city officials have expressed a desire, Ortiz said, to extend the airport's runway to 6,000 feet.