In the most recent round of TIGER grants announced last week, the City of Tampa, Florida will receive $11 million to finish its Riverwalk project. The Tampa Bay Times reports that the grant, awarded by U.S. DOT through the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, will help fix two gaps in the walkway in a section of downtown Tampa where crashes between cars, cyclists, and pedestrians are common. The 2.6-mile walkway along the Hillsborough River will also be connected to a 1.7-mile multi-use trail, which will create pedestrian and bike connections to bus and streetcar lines. According to Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn,
“This is what we’ve been waiting for… [The Riverwalk] allows us to get pedestrians out of a very unsafe environment. As a linkage in our downtown core, it’s just as important as a road.”
The Riverwalk grant will also create 200 construction jobs and act as a catalyst for private investment along the river. As a pedestrian link between neighborhoods and employment centers, it will expand economic development opportunities downtown and in the city of Tampa as a whole.