Green Line Extension Gets Nod from President Obama

FY15 Budget Includes $100 Million

This press release was sent out by MassDOT.

 

BOSTON –
Wednesday, March 5, 2014 – President Obama in his budget released yesterday
recommended federal funding to support the Green Line Extension (GLX), marking
a significant milestone for a project that will bring thousands of new jobs to
the region and create new economic opportunity.

The
President’s proposal includes $100 million in Federal Fiscal Year 2015 and
paves the way for agreement with the federal government for greater support
over the next several years.

“I thank
President Obama and his Administration for recognizing the critical importance
of completing the Green Line Extension,” said Governor Deval Patrick. “This
historic commitment of federal New Starts Program funds, when matched with
state contributions, will fulfill a promise made during construction of the
Central Artery Project and complete the long-awaited extension of rail service
to Somerville and Medford.

With the
first phase of construction already underway, we are already clearly seeing the
economic opportunity and jobs created through this project. This wise federal
and state investment will unlock the potential economic growth along the new
Green Line corridor and leave a legacy of greater mobility for residents and
smart environmental benefits in one of the Commonwealth’s most
densely-populated areas.”

Earlier this
year, the Patrick Administration requested that the federal government fund 50
percent of the $1.428 billion project.

The Green
Line Extension project is an initiative of the
Massachusetts Department of Transportation
(MassDOT)
and the Massachusetts Bay Transportation
Authority (MBTA)
.This important project will extend existing MBTA Green
Line service from a relocated Lechmere Station in East Cambridge to Union
Square in Somerville and College Avenue in Medford.

“We have been
working closely with the Obama Administration on the Green Line Extension and
this is an important step forward in securing the federal funding necessary for
construction,” stated Congressman Mike Capuano, a member of the House
Transportation Committee. “The environmental and economic benefits of extending
the Green Line are tremendous and residents are overwhelmingly supportive of
it. Today’s news brings us closer to the day when commuters can enjoy expanded
transit service.”

The GLX
project will greatly improve public transit service in some of the most
densely-populated municipalities of the Commonwealth. Among its many benefits,
the Green Line Extension project will provide new and better opportunities for
residents and visitors to travel within their communities and within the
region, address longstanding transportation inequities. It will also result in
fewer automobiles on local roads and help combat greenhouse gas emissions and
other components of air pollution.

“The Green
Line Extension offers Somerville and the region both economic justice and
environmental justice, connecting residents with jobs that pay a livable wage
and health care while reducing the number of cars on the road and pollution in
the air we all breathe, as well shifting us to a more sustainable mode of
transit,” said Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone. “Somerville owes thanks to President
Obama and Congressman Michael Capuano for committing in this budget to economic
and environmental justice for our residents and to smart, long-term
infrastructure investments that will build the 21st century transportation system we need
to have a 21st century economy. This commitment
needs local, state and federal government working together toward a common
goal, and we are fortunate to have our partners in Washington fighting to make
the Green Line Extension a reality, along with Gov. Patrick, Sec. Davey, the
MassDOT Board of Directors and all our state partners. Our 20-year
comprehensive SomerVision plan sets goals of creating 30,000 new jobs and 6,000
new homes in Somerville, all while creating walkable, bikeable,
transit-oriented neighborhoods that reduce our reliance our cars and boost our
economy, both in our city and across the region. The Green Line Extension is
crucial to reaching those goals and investing in it today means billions of
dollars pumping through the Massachusetts economy in the years to come.”

MassDOT has
already begun work on the project with early action bridge and roadway upgrades
currently underway in Somerville and Medford.   Major utility
relocation and site preparation work is scheduled to begin later this year with
full construction commencing in the spring of 2015.

In 2009, the
Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) was created to unify the
state’s various transportation agencies. MassDOT now includes the Highway
Division, the MBTA and Rail Transit Division, the Aeronautics Division, and the
Registry of Motor Vehicles.  MassDOT is committed to providing a safe and
reliable transportation system to all those who travel in the Commonwealth and
works to deliver excellent customer service. MassDOT has been nationally
recognized for its innovative approach to transportation, including the
Accelerated Bridge Program, the “Where’s My Bus and Train?” apps and “Fast 14”
work.  For more information, visit MassDOT at our website:
www.mass.gov/massdot  blog: http://blog.mass.gov/transportation/,
or follow MassDOT on twitter at
https://twitter.com/MassDOT  
and Facebook at
www.facebook.com/massdotinfo.