The Council of the District of Columbia
The Office of Councilmember Mary M. Cheh, Ward 3
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE June 25, 2011
Communications Director: Kiara Pesante o: 202-724-8089 c: 202-701-9439
Councilmember Cheh Applauds U.S. DOT’s $10 Million TIGER Grant to D.C.
Funds will be used to complete Anacostia River Trail, connect District to Maryland
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Mary M. Cheh, Chair of the Committee on the Environment, Public Works, and Transportation, applauds the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) for its $10 million Transportation Investments Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant to the District of Columbia and Maryland to finish the segment of the Anacostia River Trail that will link the Anacostia Tributary Trail system with D.C.’s trail network. The segment will connect with the existing portion of the Anacostia River Trail at Benning Road in the River Terrace neighborhood. The trail currently stops south of Bladensburg, Md.
“This grant is important for the District because it will enable residents to access new educational, employment, and recreational opportunities on foot or on bike,” said Cheh. “This will be transformative for Wards 6, 7, and 8, as the Capital Crescent Trail has been for Wards 2 and 3.”
The trail connects low-income parts of the District to the University of Maryland with a bike ride that will be shorter, on average, than a Metro trip. It will allow residents of Wards 6, 7 and 8 to commute to more job opportunities by bike, and creates great fitness and recreational opportunities for these residents.
The TIGER program is a highly competitive program that is able to support innovative projects difficult to fund through other federal programs. In many cases, such as the Anacostia River Trail, these grants will serve as the final piece of funding for infrastructure investments totaling $1.7 billion in overall project costs. These federal funds are being leveraged with money from private sector partners, states, local governments, metropolitan planning organizations, and transit agencies.
In this fourth round of the TIGER program, DOT is investing a total of nearly $500 million in 47 projects in 34 states and here in the District of Columbia. The selected projects improve safety, help communities recover from natural disasters, and give people more transportation choices within their cities, counties, and states. Overall, through four rounds of TIGER, the Obama Administration has invested $3.1 billion in 218 innovative projects in all 50 states.
Cheh noted that only 1 in 20 of the 703 applications for the grants were awarded, and attributed the District’s success to the quality and importance of the project and the excellent work of the District Department of Transportation in presenting the District’s case.