DC rejected for Urban Circulator streetcar grant
The Federal Transit Administration has selected 53 winners for transit grants, including the Urban Circulator which DC was hoping to get to extend the H Street streetcar across the Anacostia to Benning Road.
Segment applied for in the grant. Image from the DC Alternatives Analysis.
Almost two weeks ago, NCPC Chairman Preston Bryant asked the FTA to deny this grant because of NCPC's concerns with overhead wires and its jurisdictional dispute with the DC Council, even though the streetcar segment the grant would have covered lies outside the overhead wire ban.
Bryant's "budgetary blackmail" now becomes particularly foolish. Whether or not he successfully blocked DC from getting a grant, he hasn't succeeded in gaining more authority for NCPC, and now DC has even less incentive to work with NCPC now that the grant is out of the picture and NCPC has tried to interfere with home rule.
The urban circulator grants went to rail streetcars in Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Fort Worth, and St. Louis, along with a BRT program in Chicago.
The rest of the grant recipients got money for a "bus and bus livability" grant, which obviously the streetcar was not eligible for. Maryland got money for buses in Baltimore and Prince George's County, and Virginia for express bus purchases in Richmond.
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