Over the last two years, the response to our popular TIGER (that's Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) grant program has been overwhelming. We've already provided $2.1 billion for 126 projects that are creating jobs and investing in transportation networks nationwide.
And we're not stopping there.
I'm pleased to announce that we're making an additional $527 million available for a third round of TIGER funding. And we're encouraging states, cities, and local governments to submit their applications.
Now, we expect these dollars to be in high demand. During the previous two rounds, DOT received more than 2,500 applications requesting more than $79 billion for transportation projects across the country.
But our competitive grant program will ensure that only the most beneficial and innovative transportation solutions are selected. Projects will be chosen based on their ability to:
- Contribute to the long-term economic competitiveness of the nation,
- Upgrade the safety and quality of existing transportation infrastructure and facilities,
- Increase energy efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and
- Improve the quality of life in communities through better transportation choices and connections.
It's building a multi-modal transit center in Kent, Ohio. It's bringing streetcars to Salt Lake City, Utah. It's helping to complete a 128-mile regional network of pedestrian and bicycle facilities around Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey. And that's just the beginning.
As I've said before, TIGER is not just another grant program. It's a new way of recognizing merit that breaks through old formulas and rewards American innovation that serves American communities. And I can't wait to get this new round of funding out the door.