Maryland's new FLASH bus rapid transit line will cost $31 million, with $10 million in funding from a U.S. Department of Transportation TIGER grant. It's also the first bus rapid transit line in the state.
Promises (or fears) of the end of TIGER grant funding have proven unfounded thus far into the Trump Administration. Here's what's new with the U.S. Department of Transportation grant program formerly known as TIGER.
A span built to remove the danger of crossing a busy eight-lane roadway to Florida International University became the danger itself when it collapsed five days after being dropped into place using innovative bridge-building techniques.
The Summerhill Bus Rapid Transit Project—on track to become the first bus rapid transit line in the state of Georgia—received a critical bath of funding from the federal government this week in the form of a $12.6 million TIGER grant.
The Trump Administration signaled a desire to scrap a funding program that helped fund transit, pedestrian, and bike infrastructure. A new program likely focused on rural and toll roads could take its place.
The president's Fiscal Year 2019 Budget cuts the critical Capital investment Grants program run by the Federal Transit Administration. Projects lacking a full-funding grant agreement, like the Sacramento Streetcar, may fall victim.
While the 2.8 mile Wave Streetcar project has secured $195 million, proposals for design and construction are coming in higher than expected, which would leave Broward County and Fort Lauderdale responsible for half the extra cost.
Unlike the House Appropriations Committee's DOT budget that reduces spending by almost 4 percent from current levels and eliminates the TIGER grant program, its Senate counterpart increased transportation spending, including the TIGER grant budget.
While reduced from current levels, the House Appropriations Committee budgeted far more than what President Trump had proposed, but they agreed with him to eliminate the TIGER grant program and reduce transit investments, though by a lesser amount.
The president spent Infrastructure Week touting a $1 trillion infrastructure investment plan that has yet to materialize, unlike the elimination of an essential grant program in his 2018 budget that will be detrimental to over 50 transit projects.
Congress passed a $1.1 trillion omnibus spending bill to keep the government operating through September that also restores funding to transportation programs that the president had eliminated or greatly reduced. Trump signed the bill Friday.
The showman captured America's attention with a promise to "make America great again" with a $1 trillion infrastructure plan. Receiving scant attention are the infrastructure grant programs he'll cut in order to fund massive defense spending.