WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Federal Transit Administration (FTA) today announced the award of approximately $39 million in federal grant funds for construction of the 4th Street/Prater Way Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Project between Reno and Sparks, Nevada. The new BRT line will significantly improve transit service and connections for residents traveling between each of the cities’ downtown areas to regional employment and education opportunities.
“The Obama Administration is proud to partner with Nevada to bring more modern, reliable transit service to thousands of residents in Reno and Sparks,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “Access to transit means access to jobs, schools, health care, and opportunity, and this new BRT line will also help to boost economic development along the corridor.”
The 3.1-mile BRT line will operate in mixed traffic along the Historic Highway 40 (Lincoln Highway) corridor that links the downtown business districts of Reno and Sparks. The project includes four electric buses, a fast-charge station, four branded passenger stations with level boarding, as well as real-time schedule information, transit signal priority upgrades, and pedestrian and bicycle improvements. The Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) of Washoe County anticipates the BRT service will open in 2019.
“The FTA is awarding highly competitive grant funds for this project because there is a clear need for better alternatives to traffic-congested roads in Washoe County,” said FTA Acting Administrator Carolyn Flowers. “For many of the residents in this corridor who rely on public transportation, this BRT line will reduce transit travel times, improve transit service reliability, and provide a more reliable, enjoyable ride.”
DOT is providing approximately $39 million to RTC for the new BRT line. Federal funds include a $16 million Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant, $11.8 million from the Surface Transportation Program, $6.47 million from FTA’s Capital Investment Grant (CIG) Program, and $5.3 million from the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Program. The remaining cost is being covered by local sources.
The CIG Program is the nation’s primary grant program for funding major transit capital investments. Projects accepted into the program must go through a multi-year, multi-step process according to requirements in law in order to be eligible for and receive program funds. For more information about the program, please visit FTA’s CIG web site.