WASHINGTON, DC – At today’s monthly meeting, the National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board (TPB) announced that it submitted an application last week to the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) for funding to improve bicycle and pedestrian access to 16 of the region’s Metrorail and commuter rail stations.
The overall cost of the TPB’s proposal is $32.1 million, with $19.9 million in funding sought under the Fiscal Year 2012 round of the USDOT’s Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) program and the remaining $12.2 million coming from local, state, and developer match.
The proposed projects seek to make it easier for people to access rail stations in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia by bicyclists and pedestrians and to support high-density, mixed-use development in underutilized station areas. The application is similar to the TPB’s $37.8 proposal submitted in October 2011 under the Fiscal Year 2011 round of the TIGER program; however the overall proposal cost is approximately $5.7 million lower than in the previous version while the match amount increased by $3.7 million.
In addition to the TPB, the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG) Board of Directors, and project partner jurisdictions, the proposal has received several high-profile endorsements, including Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) General Manager Richard Sarles, and a joint letter of endorsement from members of the region’s congressional delegation: Gerald Connolly (VA-11), Donna Edwards (MD-4), Jim Moran (VA-8), Eleanor Holmes Norton (DC-At Large), and Chris Van Hollen (MD-8).
Recommendations from the TPB’s Transportation/Land-Use Connections program, as well as WMATA’s recent study on improving bicycle and pedestrian access at its stations, helped to provide potential projects appropriate for inclusion in the proposal.
The TIGER program is a competitive, discretionary grant program of the USDOT aimed at funding innovative transportation projects of regional scale that are ready to be implemented quickly and therefore have an immediate impact on creating jobs.
The TPB submitted a successful application in the first round of TIGER, receiving $58.8 million in funding for the creation of a regional priority bus network.