By Steve Tawa
US transportation secretary Ray LaHood was in Philadelphia today to announce another federal “Tiger grant” — one of 40 being handed out throughout the country to help fund transportation projects.
LaHood (at lectern in photo below) says this round of discretionary funding was awarded on a competitive basis:
“All told, communities requested $14 billion for a little over $500 million (total available).”
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Mayor Nutter (second from right) says Philadelphia’s share is $10 million, to upgrade old traffic control devices.
“We’re replacing about 100, forty-year-old traffic controllers with the latest fiber-optic technology,” the mayor said.
The rest of the funding for the $20-million project comes from the city, SEPTA, and Penndot.
The technology includes infrastructure for mass transit signal prioritization, which will extend the green light when a bus or trolley is detected.
Rina Cutler, deputy mayor for transportation (far right in photo), says one of the biggest complaints the administration gets is from drivers who get stuck at red lights. This funding will free up bottlenecks along Woodland Avenue in Southwest Philadelphia, and at Bustleton and Castor Avenues in the Northeast.