BOSTON, Mass. – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Under Secretary for Policy, Peter Rogoff, joined Boston Mayor Martin Walsh and other officials earlier today for the groundbreaking for the Connect Historic Boston project. Construction will soon begin on the project that will improve pedestrian and bicyclist access to Boston and various local historic sites.
“This project will not only change the transportation landscape but it will provide more commuting choices and better access to jobs for local residents,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “We are counting on Congress to pass long-term transportation funding to ensure that more projects like this one will be possible.”
The $23 million Connect Historic Boston project will use a $15.5 million Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant. The TIGER program funds transformative projects and helps communities keep pace with expanding and diverse travel needs.
Earlier this year, the Obama Administration proposed the GROW AMERICA Act, a $478 billion, six-year surface transportation reauthorization proposal that addresses the needs of aging infrastructure and a growing population. The Act provides $7.5 billion over six years to more than double the funding for the TIGER grant program.
“Connect Historic Boston will make it easier for residents and visitors alike to get around easily and reduce their reliance on local roads,” said Under Secretary Rogoff. “We anticipate that this project will dramatically improve Boston’s historic areas and inspire similar projects in cities across the country.”
When completed, the project will reconstruct and widen an inadequate, aging system of paths and sidewalks, along Joy Street, Constitution Road, the Blackstone Block and between Haymarket and Faneuil Hall. The new bike trail around downtown -- featuring buffered, protected bike lanes, special paving to separate the trail from the roadways and pedestrian walkways, and two-lane tracks for cyclists – will better connect cyclists with other paths and transit stations throughout the area.
Connect Historic Boston is an initiative between the National Park Service and the City of Boston’s Transportation Department to make walking, biking and taking the T to downtown Boston’s many destinations easy and fun.