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It's TIGER time again

Each of the past three years the US Department of Transportation (USDOT) has allocated hundreds of millions of dollars in grants to local governments, as part of a program called TIGER. Each year the Metropolitan Washington Transportation Planning Board (TPB) puts together an application on behalf of the DC region.

Photo by Paul Li on Flickr.

This year, TPB is submitting an application for $24 million that would go towards improving bicycle and pedestrian access to rail stations.

TIGER grants are extremely competitive nationally. The money can be used for almost anything related to transportation, so thousands of applications are submitted every year. USDOT funds the projects it deems most worthy, based on an extensive set of evaluation criteria.

If TPB's submission is funded, the money would go to completing the following projects:

Project Description
Fort Totten street improvements Rebuild 1st Place NE and Galloway Road NE in DC to make them more pedestrian friendly.
Forest Glen over/underpass and bikesharing Construct a grade-separated pedestrian/bicyclist crossing of Georgia Avenue, and establish 10 Capital Bikeshare stations in the Forest Glen neighborhood.
New Carrollton street improvements Sidewalk and crossing improvements at multiple locations around New Carrollton station, in anticipation of future TOD.
Twinbrook street improvements Sidewalk and crossing improvements at multiple locations around Twinbrook station, in anticipation of future TOD.
West Hyattsville sidewalks and bike station Improve sidewalks around West Hyattsville station, and construct a full-service bicycle station similar to the one at Union Station.
Pentagon City cycle track and bikesharing Reconstruct Army Navy Drive to be a complete street, including a two-way cycle track, and add 10 Capital Bikeshare stations to Columbia Pike.
VRE bike parking Add 35 secure bike lockers with capacity for 70 bikes at a total of 8 VRE stations located outside the Beltway.

Two years ago, during the initial round of TIGER allocations, TPB successfully won a grant for about $60 million worth of bus priority improvements. Last year they requested money for a massive expansion of Capital Bikeshare, but unfortunately did not receive funding. Hopefully the region will be successful again this year.

Cross-posted at BeyondDC.

Dan Malouff is a transportation planner for Arlington and professor of geography at George Washington University, but blogs to express personal views. He has a degree in urban planning from the University of Colorado, and lives in NE DC. He runs BeyondDC and contributes to the Washington Post


Add a comment »

Has the bus money been used yet...?

by JJJJJ on Nov 3, 2011 3:54 pm • linkreport

Yep, great question.

by Charlie on Nov 3, 2011 4:33 pm • linkreport

What about the K Street project?

by Shipsa01 on Nov 3, 2011 9:44 pm • linkreport

Didn't we lose out last time because all the projects we submitted were non-auto related? Are we going to repeat this same mistake this year?

by Lance on Nov 3, 2011 10:15 pm • linkreport

Didn't we lose out last time because all the projects we submitted were non-auto related?


by Alex B. on Nov 3, 2011 11:21 pm • linkreport

So what exactly is "future TOD"? I love how experts use impenetrable jargon and acronyms without even realizing it. I am guilty of it myself at times.

by Dave J on Nov 4, 2011 9:16 am • linkreport

Transit Oriented Development.

by Canaan on Nov 4, 2011 9:22 am • linkreport

@Lance, most of the TIGER grants in past 2 years have been to transit or rail related projects. There were some road projects in there, but the grants cover a wide range of projects.

Last year, the TIGER II program received close to 1000 applications for a total of $19 billion. For a program with $600 million of total funding and also with the requirement that around 1/4 of the funds be spent in rural areas (the hand of the US Senate at work I expect). With enough funding to only cover little more than 3% of the application requests, the odds of getting selected were long. Don't have to make up conspiracies or dark political motives as reasons for not getting selected.

This year the TIGER program is $526 million, so there is less funding available this year and the odds of getting selected could be even longer. Are there other local agencies or governments submitting application for TIGER grants this year?

by AlanF on Nov 4, 2011 9:41 am • linkreport

Its too bad they are not trying again for the massive CaBi expansion -- the city still needs significantly more of these bikes, it is an unreliable mode of transportation now because it is too popular.

by Dave on Nov 4, 2011 10:45 am • linkreport

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