U.S. DOT and HUD Join to Make $75 Million in Public Transit and Housing Grants Available
U.S. DOT and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) have jointly released a notice of funding availability for TIGER II Planning Grants and HUD Sustainable Community Challenge Grants. Up to $75 million for planning activities – $35 million from DOT and $40 million from HUD – will be made available this year. These grants will fund localized planning activities that
lead to projects integrating transportation, housing, and economic development. Examples include developing particular transportation corridors – or regional transportation systems – that promote TOD with an affordable housing component, and developing expanded public transportation options, including accessible transit and paratransit services. Pre-applications are due in one month, with full applications due August 23.
Transit Rail Advisory Committee for Safety (TRACS) Formed
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood announced June 24 the members of the Transit Rail Advisory Committee for Safety, a newly formed advisory committee that will assist FTA with developing national safety standards for rail transit. Details to follow in the next issue of Passenger Transport.
FTA Holds New and Small Starts ANPRM Webinar; Schedules Outreach Sessions
FTA hosted an informational webinar June 24 to explain the Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) that seeks public comment on how to change the way major transit project proposals seeking federal funding are rated and evaluated. FTA has also scheduled six informational outreach seminars to be held across the country prior to the August 2 deadline to submit comments. Comments are sought from transit riders, local
and state governments, and other interested stakeholders on the agency’s proposal to take a more holistic approach to evaluating the cost-effectiveness of New and Small Start projects, as well as economic development and environmental benefits.
DC City Council Convenes Hearing on Streetcars
The Washington, DC City Council’s Committee on Public Works and Transportation held a hearing June 22 on the “Transportation Infrastructure Amendment Act of 2010,” which preserves the prohibition of overhead wires over any streets or avenues, except for those aerial wires the mayor deems necessary to power transportation infrastructure projects. Martin Schroeder, APTA chief engineer, said in part: “The option of using single-wire [overhead] technology …
would provide the District of Columbia with the flexibility to select the best design for a successful streetcar system, based on the principles of systems engineering: manage risk, work within budget allowances, and achieve desired system performance.”
Save the Date
Register now for the 2010 APTA Annual Meeting, in San Antonio – so you don't miss keynote speaker Malcolm Gladwell, bestselling author of The Tipping Point, Blink, and Outliers: The Story of Success.
In the Media
The 5th Annual National Dump the Pump Day on June 17 resulted in a wide range of activities. Co-sponsors were the Sierra Club and Natural Resources Defense Council, which blogged on the benefits of public transportation.
Ask not for whom the bridge tolls ... but Puget Sound drivers say that when state tolling begins in 2011, many of them will switch to the bus.
AOL Travel recently enumerated the world's 10 most unique modes of public transportation.