Biden-Harris Administration Announces $4 Billion Boost for Transit Construction Projects

In a move signalling a major commitment to enhancing public transportation infrastructure across the United States, U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg has recommended nearly $4 billion in federal support for 14 significant transit projects spanning 11 states. This announcement, made as part of President Biden’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2025 Budget Request to Congress, underscores the administration’s dedication to bolstering transit options, fostering economic development, and creating job opportunities nationwide.

The recommended projects, comprising both rail and bus rapid transit (BRT) initiatives, aim to catalyse transformative change within their respective communities by extending transit accessibility to new riders. Secretary Buttigieg emphasised the profound impact of public transportation, stating, “When transit reaches more people and communities, its impact is even greater.” He further emphasised the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to expanding transit options for millions of Americans nationwide.

These projects, funded through the Capital Investment Grants (CIG) and Expedited Project Delivery Pilot programs, encompass a diverse array of transit endeavours, including subway systems, commuter rail, light rail, streetcars, and bus rapid transit. Acting Administrator of the Federal Transit Administration (FTA), Veronica Vanterpool, highlighted the importance of these investments in advancing environmental sustainability, safety, equity, and overall quality of life.

Of the 14 recommended projects, seven would receive funding through the CIG program for the first time. Notable among these are:

– The Chicago Red Line Extension Project in Illinois receiving $350 million to enhance mobility and accessibility on the city’s Far South Side.

– The Hudson Tunnel Project in New Jersey/New York, allocated $700 million, aimed at improving reliability for New Jersey Transit and Amtrak trains.

– The VIA Advanced Rapid Transit North/South Corridor Project in Texas, securing $109.7 million, intended to connect key destinations in San Antonio.

Additionally, the President’s FY 2025 Budget request includes funding for seven projects recommended to receive financial support for the first time. These projects span California, Florida, Indiana, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin, focusing on enhancing transit connectivity, particularly in underserved communities.

Furthermore, the FY25 Annual Report on Funding Recommendations outlines $2.37 billion in annual appropriations requested from Congress, supplemented by $1.6 billion in funding provided through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law advance appropriations.

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, enacted in November 2021, represents a cornerstone of the Biden-Harris Administration’s agenda, aiming to fortify America’s infrastructure, tackle the climate crisis, and foster economic growth. By investing in transit projects, the administration seeks to create sustainable and equitable opportunities for communities nationwide while driving job creation and economic prosperity.

In alignment with these efforts, the President’s FY 2025 Budget request includes provisions to enhance access to federal funds and streamline transit development processes. These measures aim to support equity in rural and Tribal areas, address fiscal challenges, empower local authorities, unlock micromobility systems, and expedite the delivery of low- and no-emission buses.