Every day, millions of Americans use the transportation system to reach jobs, schools, healthcare, and retail shopping. How long it takes and how much it costs them to accomplish these daily tasks defines their level of connectivity to opportunity.
In Richmond, a DOT TIGER grant is helping the Greater Richmond Transit Company build the city's first Bus Rapid Transit line, a 7.6-mile corridor between the city and Henrico County. Importantly, the Broad Street BRT line will provide reliable service --and access to 77,000 area employment opportunities-- for transit-dependent residents in Richmond's Fulton Hill community.
Unfortunately, far too many communities in America face inadequate transportation options, which makes it difficult to access opportunities and critical services.
In partnership with U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Envitonmental Protection Agency, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Appalachian Regional Comission and the Delta Regional Authority, with support from the White House Rural Council, Local Foods, Local Places provides technical assistance to create walkable, healthy, economically vibrant neighborhoods through the development of local food systems. At DOT, we support this initiative by working to ensure that local roads and transit services connect farmers, food businesses, markets, and residents.
FASTLANE Freight Grant Program is a brand new program to better support the movement of freight. DOT included language to focus on opportunity and community impacts: "The Department will prioritize projects that also enhance personal mobility and accessibility…including…investments that better connect people to essential services such as employment centers, health care, schools and education facilities, healthy food, and recreation; remove physical barriers to access; strengthen communities through neighborhood redevelopment; … and support workforce development, particularly for disadvantaged groups, which include low-income groups, persons with visible and hidden disabilities, elderly individuals, and minority persons and populations.”
In 2014, DOT redirected $100 million in existing funds to support the Ladders of Opportunity Bus and Bus Facilities Grant Program these projects worked to improve “the mobility of Americans with transportation disadvantages and allow them a better chance of climbing Ladders of Opportunity towards economic self-determination. It focuses on serving groups for whom finding and maintaining stable, uplifting employment has long been an intransigent problem.”