The people of Springfield, Massachusetts, know that sometimes a road is more than just a way of getting from point A to point B. That's why they have made the effort to revamp that city's historic State Street corridor.
"It's a magnificent 3.2-mile street and all cities in America should have a State Street," observed Rep. Neal. And he should know, having graduated from Technical High School just around the corner.
Rep. Neal has championed the corridor's redesign for years. Today, thanks to $17 million in state and federal funding, his impressive vision has become an even more impressive reality.
And I want to thank Gov. Patrick for his support of this terrific project. Massachusetts' contribution to this important work shows the state's understanding of how 21st century infrastructure leads to 21st century economic success.
The city of Springfield gets that, too. And they've proven it by coming out today with just a terrific welcome for me. The kids of the Rebecca M. Johnson Visual and Performing Arts Elementary School may be young, but they see that this kind of investment and activity indicates their city is committed to their future.
Because, these roadway and streetscape improvements are a springboard for public-private corridor redevelopment. This project is a perfect example of how support from the federal government can breathe new life into a historic community.
The State Street Alliance, a local partnership of more than 50 schools, churches, businesses and organizations, demonstrates the value of pooling resources to achieve common goals. They've put together an array of commercial and mixed-use projects that would never have happened without a redesigned State Street.
With DOT's investments in planning and improvements--in revamping streetscapes and increasing transit options--we’re paving a road to Springfield’s renewal, to new jobs for workers and new opportunities for businesses to flourish and the community to thrive.
You know, Springfield's State Street has a history dating back as early as 1673. It's a road traveled by Paul Revere, George Washington, Ben Franklin, John Adams, Franklin Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy and many others. It has played a part in the birth of basketball, the legendary Indian Motocycle [sic] Manufacturing Company, and the Underground Railway.
With today's rededication, this corridor connects Springfield’s past with Springfield’s future.