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News & Press: Federal Policy

TIGER grants announced: Good news for Complete Streets and Trails

Monday, March 19, 2018   (0 Comments)
Posted by: APBP
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Last week the US Department of Transportation announced the most recent round of TIGER grants. Of the 40 grants awarded:

  • 2 were multi-modal trails
  • 7 were complete streets projects
  • 23 were highway projects
  • 3 were port projects
  • 3 were rail projects 
  • 2 were transit

THE GOOD NEWS:

Bicycling and walking did well. The two trail projects account for almost five percent of funding overall. That is roughly the funding bicycling and walking received over the last few TIGER cycles. 

Complete Streets projects did very well
Complete streets projects made up 17 percent of the projects, and 16 percent of the funding.  All these include bicycling and walking projects, many are road diets.

We didn’t know what to expect from this year’s TIGER grant program
The TIGER program is different from most transportation programs. For TIGER, the funding and rules around this program are decided through the budget/appropriations process each year.

The White House proposed ending the TIGER program or changing the criteria for choosing projects. While Congress didn’t officially weigh in (they still haven’t passed a budget), several members convinced the administration to use the existing criteria. (safety, state of good repair, economic competitiveness, environmental sustainability, and quality of life). If the criteria do change, bicycling and walking projects may not be so successful. 

THE BAD NEWS:

Transit did not do well. In the past transit projects have received more than 20 percent of TIGER funding. This year it got less than 4 percent. It is unclear why this drastic change.

Bridge projects do not mention bicycle and pedestrian access. One of the markers of the TIGER program under Secretary LaHood was that bridge projects selected for TIGER often included bicycle and pedestrian access. This year there are five bridge projects, and while one mentions shoulders, none of them specifically mention bicycle and pedestrian access.  

APBP will continue to advocate for the TIGER program and the current criteria. We will also look for opportunities to promote multi-modal projects and access on bridges.

TRAIL PROJECTS:

  •  Bridging the Trail Gap: Enhancing Regional Connections, Philadelphia, PA This project fills a gap in the Schuylkill River Trail between Center City and Southwest Philadelphia. This is part of a trail network that connects neighborhoods within Philadelphia, and Philadelphia to Camden, NJ.  
  • Nelson Island Accessibility and Transportation Infrastructure Viability Enhancement (N.A.T.I.V.E.) Project, Nunakauyarmiut Tribe (Alaska) This project repairs 21 miles of an unpaved trail that has been damaged by erosion and ATV use.  The project will use synthetic geocell mats with an open configuration to improve safety for travelers as well as protect native vegetation. The project will provide a safe and dependable transportation for travel and emergency response for the economically distressed remote Nelson Island communities, including improving access to the only sub-regional health center in the area.

COMPLETE STREETS PROJECTS

  • Carson City Gateway: South Carson Street Complete Streets - A road diet that includes dedicated bicycling facilities, sidewalks and intelligent technology systems in Carson City, Nevada 
  • Downtown Akron Promenade (Phase Two) - This project builds on a planning grant from an earlier TIGER to design and reconstruct main street with traffic calming, bicycle and pedestrian facilities, and improved transit and storm water facilities.
  • City of Burlington Downtown/Riverfront Revitalization Project, Burlington, Iowa - This project includes complete streets improvements, a linear multi-use path park, and waterfront improvements.
  • Georgetown East Gateway, Delaware – Improves an intersection by including roadway realignment, signal improvements, bike lanes, sidewalks, crosswalks, transit stops, and lighting.
  • Immokalee Complete Streets, Collier County, Florida –This complete streets project includes approximately 20 miles of new sidewalks, a bike boulevard network, transit improvements, landscaping, drainage improvements, etc.
  • Frankfort Second Street Corridor Project, Frankfort, Kentucky – This grant will reconstruct a main corridor including wider sidewalks, , ADA accessibility, streetscape enhancements, bike lanes, and green infrastructure improvements.
  • Hightower Road Corridor, Mississippi State University –  This grant will help complete an approximately two-mile, multimodal north/south corridor including sidewalks, bike lanes, and transit improvements.

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