Partnership in the News: Bergen County, NJ wants transportation choices, less traffic, more walking and biking

Together North Jersey

At a recent public workshop, residents of Bergen County noted that sitting in traffic, few transportation choices, and the lack of affordable housing are things they’d like to see changed.

Together North Jersey, a partnership between 60 local governments, public agencies, non-profits, and others, held the workshop to begin to find out what residents of the 13-county region like about where they live and what they would change. Eventually that input will be turned into a development plan to deal with uneven job growth, high taxes, and an aging population among other regional concerns.

Multitude of Unfunded TIGER Grant Applications Points to Need for Continued Funding

The Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) program, provides a unique opportunity for the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to invest in road, rail, transit, and port projects that promise to achieve national objectives. Now in its fourth round, the program remains critically underfunded. DOT received 703 applications, totaling $10.2 billion in requests. Out of those, 47 projects were selected to receive a total of close to $500 million.

Partnership in the News: Massachusetts to Study Old Railbed with Help of EPA Grant

The Metropolitan Area Planning Council selected Newton and Needham, Massachusetts as one of five communities to receive an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) grant. The free technical assistance will be used to study options for a defunct railbed that connects the two communities, reports the Needham Patch. The funding for this project comes from the EPA’s Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities Program.

“We are excited to lend our expertise to a wide range of communities,” Andre Leroux, executive director of the Massachusetts Smart Growth Alliance, said in the press release. “This opportunity advances the Alliance’s goal to help communities here in Greater Boston enhance their quality of life, economic strength, and affordability.”

Partnership in the News: Transportation Secretary Supports Creation of Regional Transportation Authority in Southeast Michigan

As cities like Detroit are still contending with lower tax bases resulting from economic recession, public transit agencies struggle to cover operating expenses and are forced to reduce operating times and make cuts to vital bus and other transit services.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood supports greater federal funding to help cover these public transit operating costs. Says LaHood to The Huffington Post:

“Over the long run, the best way to address many of the challenges facing the transit agencies in Detroit and the surrounding suburbs is for the Michigan legislature to implement a Regional Transportation Authority as soon as possible. If fully funded, an RTA will eventually bring the many struggling transit agencies serving greater-Detroit into one system that will be more efficient, more reliable, and be more responsive to the needs of the people throughout the region.”

Partnership in the News: The Buzz Around TIGER 2012

The Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery, or TIGER Discretionary Grant program, provides a unique opportunity for US DOT to invest in road, rail, transit and port projects that promise to achieve critical national objectives. The TIGER grant program is also part of the federal interagency Partnership for Sustainable Communities, which encourages collaboration with US EPA … Continued

Partnership in the News: Oakland Receives TIGER Grant to Improve Infrastructure and Create Jobs

The Port of Oakland recently received $15 million in funding from the fourth round of the federal TIGER grant program. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and California Governor Edmund Brown Jr. visited the project site this week, reports the Maritime Executive. Said Secretary LaHood:

“The Obama Administration is committed to making our ports the best in the world. The Port of Oakland is already the leading export gateway on the West Coast and this TIGER grant will help boost rail access and capacity, which will contribute to the economic growth of the region.”