Posted by Jonathan Maus ( Publisher/Editor ) on February 17th, 2010 at 9:49 am
U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood has announced winners of the Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grants. The only project to be awarded in Oregon was $23.2 million for “Portland’s Innovation Quadrant – SW Moody St. & Streetcar Reconstruction” (total project cost is $66.5 million).
Many in the local bike scene were dreaming about a $98 million package Metro applied for that would have connected and built trails on the West Side and would have created America’s first world-class neighborhood bikeway system in North and Northeast Portland.
But it was not to be.
The competition for TIGER grants was steep. In total, the USDOT received 1,380 applications from all 50 states (and D.C. and three territories) that totaled $56 billion. Today’s announced doles out $1.5 billion to 50 projects.
Oregon submitted 21 TIGER grant applications for a total of $848 million in requests.
Sec. LaHood visited the South Waterfront district back in July where he had high praise for Portland and for streetcars.
this streetcar press conference in
South Waterfront back in July.
Here’s the SW Moody project description:
“TIGER funds will be used to reconstruct SW Moody Avenue in the South Waterfront area. The project will elevate the roadway by 14 feet to cap contaminated soils. It will include three traffic lanes, dual streetcar tracks and pedestrian and bicycle facilities. The project will introduce infrastructure investment to support future development.”
While the Portland region’s big bike dreams didn’t come true, the USDOT did award funding to two bike projects. $20.5 million will go toward the “Indianapolis Bicycle and Pedestrian Network” project and $23 million will go toward the “Philadelphia Area Pedestrian & Bicycle Network.” (It’s also worth noting that many of the other project are likely to include biking and walking facilities.)
Metro’s Active Transportation Partnership project manager Lake McTighe organized the $98 million TIGER grant request. She said she’s already moving on to other potential funding sources and sent out an email today saying, “I will be looking into the story behind these projects [from Indianapolis and Philadelphia] and what made them winners.”
More on the TIGER grant announcement at the USDOT’s “Fast Lane” blog.