September 3, 2016 by Lorene
The Army wanted to move a high volume of vehicles from DC to San Francisco. Ike volunteered to serve on this project. He thought it would be a great way to see the country. “The highways of 1919 ranged in quality from average to non-existent.” Many were basically dirt or gravel, so the convoy averaged 50 miles a day. They had to deal with breakdowns, getting stuck in the mud, etc. This trip is what Ike was thinking about when he created the interstate highway system when he was President.
He paid for the roads with a gas tax. He spoke about how the highways would be important for national defense, as well as personal trips and truck traffic. Ike had seen the German autobahn in action, so he made sure the highways were designed with multiple lanes and on/off ramps so traffic would move smoothly when cars exited or entered the roads.