LaHood, Davis announce $18 million in transit grants

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CENTRAL ILLINOIS (WMBD) — $18 million in grants will be used to revitalize local transit operations and build a new transfer center in Bloomington.

According to a Thursday afternoon press release from U.S. Reps. Rodney Davis (IL-13) and Darin LaHood (IL-18), the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) awarded Greater Peoria Mass Transit a $10 million grant and awarded Connect Transit an $8 million grant to build a downtown Bloomington Transfer Center that will replace the current on-street bus transfer center.

The new center will serve 10 bus routes and 1,800 daily boardings, offering riders protection from weather and improved safety, access, amenities and transit service.

“Investing in our public transit systems means we’re investing in economic and community development,” said Davis.

“I’m proud to see the Bloomington-Normal community receive this very competitive grant, which allows them to build a new transfer center in downtown Bloomington. Riders will experience better safety, access, and services once this project is complete. As a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, I will continue to be an advocate for projects that are critical to the communities I serve.”

The money became available through the Grants for Buses and Bus Facilities Program. The program provides federal resources to public transportation systems to replace, rehabilitate, and purchase buses and equipment to construct bus-related facilities.

LaHood said every year, he advocates for the program to rehabilitate public transportation across the country.

“Greater Peoria Mass Transit and Connect Transit play an essential role in our community, providing public transportation services to get residents where they need to go in a timely manner,” LaHood said.

“I am pleased to announce that this funding will provide important resources to our community that will spur economic growth and connect Peorians to their destinations. I applaud President Trump and Secretary Chao for recognizing the great work being done by Greater Peoria Mass Transit and Connect Transit and I look forward to continuing to work with them to improve our transportation system in central and west-central Illinois.”

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