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Through our Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act program (TIFIA), DOT fills market gaps leveraging Federal financing alongside private dollars to increase the funding available to invest in transportation infrastructure.  With TIFIA, each dollar of Federal funds can provide up to $10 in credit assistance and support up to $30 in investment.

Today, for example, we’re bringing that power to the Chicago Transit Authority’s (CTA) Blue Line with a $120 million loan for track and station upgrades.  It’s all part of CTA’s “Your New Blue” program to improve service to the more than 80,000 riders who use the Grand-O’Hare segment of the “L” each day. And, as Transportation Secretary Foxx said, “Going forward, we want to bring opportunities like this one to other parts of the country.”

That’s why, earlier today, we also unveiled a new TIFIA website. If you’re interested in how TIFIA can help a project you’re involved in, the new site is the place to start...

Photo of Secretary Foxx and Chicago Mayor Emanuel at CTA loan event

Continue Reading TIFIA program extends loan ››
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Earlier this week, I was in the Bay Area for a download on the latest in transportation innovation, including a ride in Google's self-driving car. And yesterday, I was back in Washington, DC, at the 18th Annual FAA Commercial Space Transportation Conference with leaders from government, science, and business.

But from autonomous vehicles to commercial space travel, my message was the same: In our 30-year draft framework –Beyond Traffic: Trends and Choices– we’re incredibly bullish about new technology and new business models, and their ability to revolutionize how we travel and how we move freight.

And --yes-- that includes the big thinkers and innovators from a community that once sounded like science fiction: commercial space transportation...

Graphic showing that FAA has licensed 233 launches
For more information on Licensed Launches, visit www.faa.gov
Continue Reading Commercial Space ››
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Yesterday, I joined Secretary Foxx to announce 25 local transit projects that we’re recommending for Capital Investment Grants in the President’s budget for 2016. Those grants include our New Starts, Small Starts, and relatively new Core Capacity programs.

Together, the recommended projects would commit $3.2 billion to help build and expand public transportation in thirteen states. That includes subways, light rail, bus rapid transit, commuter rail, and streetcar –all projects begun at the local level to meet the challenges of the future and connect people to opportunity...

Photo of fast-moving bus

Continue Reading President's budget ››
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Last night's commuter rail accident on Metro-North's Harlem Line claimed six lives and is a terrible tragedy; our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families.

As of last night, Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) investigators are on the scene, and this Department will conduct a thorough investigation to determine the factors contributing to this accident.

Safety is DOT's absolute top priority, and it must be every railroad's absolute top priority...

Continue Reading On the Metro-North accident ››
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As you might have heard, yesterday I had the opportunity to visit with some outstanding innovators in the Bay Area.

The day built up to a Virtual Fireside Chat with me and Google CEO Eric Schmidt, where we launched “Beyond Traffic: Trends and Choices,” the Department’s 30-year draft framework on the future of transportation.

But before that, I also had the good fortune of visiting with Autodesk and the Mineta Transportation Institute —both of them the kind of innovators we will need to engage with if we’re going to face the challenges we expect in the next three decades...

Photo of Secretary Foxxx at Autodesk

Continue Reading Transportation innovation ››
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If you were tuned into the Talks At Google channel on YouTube or read Mashable yesterday, then you know that --as promised last month—Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx has launched "Beyond Traffic: Trends and Choices," DOT's 30-year outlook on the future of transportation:

"For too long, our national dialogue about transportation has been focused on recreating the past.  Instead, we need to focus on the trends that are shaping our future.  In Washington, in state capitals and in city halls, it is time to sound the alarm bell: the future is calling."

Our side of this framework is a frank assessment of the lay of the land in American transportation and some of the likely challenges we'll face in the future. It's well-sourced from government and industry data, and it's a useful starting point for a discussion of where we might find ourselves in 2045 and what we can do to shape those outcomes. As Secretary Foxx said, "There's a difference between having choices and making choices."

It is not, as the Secretary has said repeatedly, a blueprint for the future handed down from above. Instead, it's an invitation to a conversation, and that invitation is for you...

Screen capture from the Blue Paper

Continue Reading We want YOU to share your ››
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Cover of F.Y. 2016 Budget HighlightsThe FY 2016 Budget that President Obama proposed today shows what we can do if we invest in America's future and commit to an economy that rewards hard work, generates rising incomes, and allows everyone to share in the prosperity of a growing America.

This proposal lays out a strategy to strengthen our middle class and help America's hard-working families get ahead in a time of relentless economic and technological change.

The President’s Budget provides a total of $94.7 billion in 2016 for the Department of Transportation to make the critical investments we need in infrastructure to promote long-term economic growth, enhance safety and efficiency, and support jobs for the 21st century. It also improves the way federal dollars are spent...

Continue Reading President Obama rolls out ››
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President Obama and I are both planning for our transportation future; your future. Today, the President will unveil a bold six-year budget proposal. The President's budget lays the foundation for a growing, changing nation. You'll like it; I strongly support it. Much more to come later today, so stay tuned to the Fast Lane.

This afternoon, I will be on the west coast. I’m heading to Google Headquarters in Mountain View, California, to start a conversation about the questions so critical to the future of our transportation system.

Questions like, "In 30 years, how will you travel?" And, "Will America be a country where driverless vehicles mean car crashes are a thing of the past? Or will our infrastructure crumble, and gridlock only get worse?"

Today, DOT is launching Beyond Traffic, a framework that’s been a year in the making and will lay the trends and choices facing American transportation over the next three decades...

Continue Reading Today, we go Beyond Traffic ››
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Rumor has it there's a big game this weekend. And while there's plenty of debate about which team will take home the Lombardi Trophy this Sunday evening, one post-game outcome that shouldn’t be in doubt is your safety and the safety of others on the road.

With millions of football fans and non-fans alike preparing to watch Super Bowl XLIX with friends and family, you don't have to be a Super Bowl-caliber coach to recognize that a good game plan involves designating a driver if you intend to drink. As NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind advises, "If you choose to drink, please make the winning decision that could save your life or the lives of others – find a sober driver to take you home."

NHTSA, the National Football League (NFL), and the Techniques for Effective Alcohol Management (TEAM) Coalition joined forces with local highway safety and law enforcement officials to remind revelers that Fans Don’t Let Fans Drive Drunk. If you're hosting a party, watching the game at a sports bar or restaurant, or attending the game, before you choose to drink, choose a designated sober driver...

Poster adivsing partiers to designate a sober driver

Continue Reading Bigger than the big game? ››
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Last November, I wrote here in the Fast Lane that the Federal Transit Administration has been working hard to establish our new safety authority and develop a framework that will allow us to better protect the nation's transit riders and transit employees.

And earlier this week, we marked another important milestone in that development as George Good, Jr., began his first day as the first full-time safety investigator for our 50-year old agency.

Day-to-day, George will support round-the-clock operations for accident investigations. He will also work closely with the transit industry and other DOT agencies to promote transit safety and develop recommended practices and procedures that can help make a safe mode of transportation even safer. And when safety issues are identified at a transit agency, George will help draft recommendations and advisories to eliminate those risks...

Photo of George Good, Jr.

Continue Reading FTA suits up first safety ››
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