Friday, September 6, 2013
Contact: Doug Hecox
U.S. Department of Transportation Announces Nearly $5 Million TIGER 2013 Grant for Arkansas' SH 92 Improvement Project
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) today announced a $4.96 million grant for the SH 92 Improvement Project, one of 52 transportation projects in 37 states that will receive a total of approximately $474 million from DOT's Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) 2013 discretionary grant program. Among these, nearly half - 25 projects funded at $123.4 million - support rural areas of the country, including the SH 92 Improvement Project. Deputy Federal Highway Administrator Greg Nadeau joined Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department Director Scott Bennett and other officials in Little Rock for the announcement.
"These TIGER projects are the best argument you can make for investment in our transportation infrastructure," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. "Together, they answer President Obama's call for a stronger transportation system for future generations by repairing existing roads and bridges, connecting people to new jobs and opportunities, and contributing to our nation's economic growth by returning this route to its original condition reducing the associated long-term operations and maintenance costs."
Arkansas' SH 92 Improvement Project, which will replace two aging bridges and resurface 14 miles of highway, will improve safety and extend the useful life of a key economic corridor in north-central Arkansas. The new bridges, on a route heavily traveled by commercial trucks serving the natural gas, timber and poultry industries, will be built to serve trucks weighing 80,000 pounds - far greater than what the existing bridges can accommodate. SH 92 in the Fayetteville Shale Play Area has been one of Arkansas' fastest growing routes, with traffic increasing in the last two years by up to 15 percent. The increased volume of heavy commercial traffic led state officials to post weight restrictions on the two bridges, causing detours and traffic blockages throughout the area.
"This is a great example of President Obama's call to Fix it First," said Deputy Administrator Nadeau. "Building more durable bridges and wider shoulders and lanes will enhance safety for thousands of drivers, create jobs and lay the foundation for more economic opportunities in north-central Arkansas."
The highly competitive TIGER program offers one of the only federal funding possibilities for large, multi-modal projects that often are not suitable for other federal funding sources. These federal funds leverage money from private sector partners, states, local governments, metropolitan planning organizations and transit agencies. The 2013 TIGER round alone supports $1.8 billion in overall project investments.
TIGER has enjoyed overwhelming demand since its creation, a trend continued by TIGER 2013. Applications for this most recent round of grants totaled more than $9 billion, far exceeding the approximately $474 million set aside for the program. In all, the Department received 585 applications from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam.
The projects funded through this round of TIGER illustrate the President's goal of creating "Ladders of Opportunity" that connect people to jobs, repairing and replacing aging infrastructure with a "Fix it First" approach and contributing to America's economic growth.
On March 26, 2013, the President signed the FY 2013 Appropriations Act, which after sequestration provided approximately $474 million for Department of Transportation national infrastructure investments. Like the first four rounds, TIGER 2013 grants are for capital investments in infrastructure and are awarded on a competitive basis based on the published selection criteria. This is the fifth round of TIGER funding.
Under all five rounds combined, the TIGER program has provided more than $3.6 billion to 270 projects in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Demand for the program outweighed available funds, and during all five rounds, the Department of Transportation received more than 5,200 applications requesting more than $114.2 billion for transportation projects across the country.
Click here for additional information on individual TIGER grants: www.dot.gov/tiger/.
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