The U.S. Department of Transportation recently announced $1.5 billion in TIGER Grant funding for over 50 high-priority, innovative transportation projects across the country. The projects, funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), will create thousands of jobs all over the country and help get the economy back on track.
M-1/Woodward Avenue Light Rail Project
$25,000,000 was awarded to construct a light rail system connecting Downtown Detroit to the New Center district along the region’s main artery on Woodward Avenue. The project is 3.4 miles long with 12 station stops. The light rail system will run on both sides of the street in the second lane from the curb and will be co-mingled with vehicular traffic. TIGER funds will be used for road rehabilitation, a streetscape enhancement project, and the purchase of light rail cars.
Black River Bridge Replacement
$30,000,000 in TIGER funds will be used to construct a new Black River Bridge to replace the existing structure built in 1963. The bridge replacement is part of the integrated $583 million Blue Water Bridge Plaza Expansion Project. The Blue Water Bridge connects Port Huron, Michigan with Canada. The overall project will expand the existing international border crossing plaza, improve the approaching I-94/I-69 corridors including some interchanges, relocate a city street, relocate an electrical substation and replace the International Welcome Center. The TIGER-funded portion of the project replaces the existing aging bridge over the Black River with a modern facility separating international and local traffic.
One of the highlights of the Black River Bridge project is the inclusion of a 14-foot wide bike/pedestrian crossing.