United States transportation secretary Ray LaHood has announced 46 transportation projects in 33 states and Puerto Rico will receive a total of $511 million from the third round of the TIGER program.
The announcement comes ahead of schedule and will allow communities to move forward with job-creating infrastructure projects including road and bridge improvements; transit upgrades; freight, port and rail expansions; and new options for bicyclists and pedestrians.
The DoT received 848 project applications from all 50 states, Puerto Rico and Washington, DC, requesting a total of $14.29 billion, far exceeding the $511 million made available for grants under the TIGER III program.
“The overwhelming demand for these grants clearly shows that communities across the country can’t afford to wait any longer for Congress to put Americans to work building the transportation projects that are critical to our economic future,” said secretary LaHood.
“That’s why we’ve taken action to get these grants out the door quickly, and that is why we will continue to ask Congress to make the targeted investments we need to create jobs, repair our nation’s transportation systems, better serve the travelling public and our nation’s businesses, factories and farms, and make sure our economy continues to grow.”
In November, President Obama directed DOT to take common sense steps to expedite transportation projects by accelerating the process for review and approval and by leveraging private sector funding to promote growth and job creation.
As part of that initiative, DOT accelerated the TIGER III application review process and has announced the awards before the end of 2011 – months ahead of the planned spring 2012 announcement.
The grants will fund a wide range of innovative transportation projects in urban and rural areas across the country:
In 2009 and 2010, the department received a total of 2,400 applications requesting $76 billion; greatly exceeding the $2.1 billion available in the TIGER I and TIGER II grant programs.
In the previous two rounds, the TIGER program awarded grants to 126 freight, highway, transit, port and bicycle/pedestrian projects in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
TIGER grants are awarded to transportation projects that have a significant national or regional impact.
A complete list of grant recipients can be viewed here.