$110 million to fund community-based projects

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New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo says $110 million in new funding is available to support community-based investments to strengthen the cultural, aesthetic, and environmental aspects of local and regional transportation systems.

The initiative funds projects that create new and enhance existing bicycle and pedestrian facilities, improve access to public transportation, create safe routes to schools, convert abandoned railway corridors to pedestrian trails and help reduce congestion and greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector. In addition, these funds may be used by municipalities to support activities that meet requirements of the Clean Air Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Projects will be selected through a competitive solicitation process and rated based on established criteria that include public benefit, air quality improvement, and finance and/or delivery innovation. Projects must be related to the surface transportation system and provide full access to the public.

Applications for funding may be developed by any municipality or non-profit incorporated group, but projects must be sponsored either by a municipality, a state agency or public authority eligible to administer federal transportation funds. Eligible project activities include:

  • Constructing new/enhancing existing pedestrian and bicycle facilities.
  • Constructing new/enhancing existing ADA accessible sidewalks, installing pedestrian safety features and adding streetscaping/corridor landscaping.
  • Converting abandoned railroad corridors into multi-use recreational trails.
  • Preserving/rehabilitating historic transportation facilities.
  • Implementing environmental mitigation measures to address stormwater management, control, and water pollution prevention or abatement related to highway runoff.
  • Reducing vehicle-caused wildlife mortality or to restore and maintain connectivity among terrestrial or aquatic habitats.
  • Enhancing traffic signals or intersections that improve traffic flow; and
  • Providing travel demand programs intended to shift traffic demand to non-peak hours or other transportation modes.

The funds, made available to the state through the Federal Highway Administration and administered by the New York State Department of Transportation, are provided through the Transportation Alternatives Program and the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program. These programs will provide up to 80 percent of project-related cost, with the remaining 20 percent provided by project sponsors. The New York State Department of Transportation will be accepting applications for this funding opportunity through Sept. 29.

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