FITCHBURG – Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Transportation Secretary and CEO Stephanie Pollack, and Highway Administrator Jonathan Gulliver joined Fitchburg Mayor Stephen DiNatale and other local leaders in Fitchburg Tuesday to announce the latest round of Complete Streets Funding Program awards, totaling $8.1 million in funding to 24 communities. These awards will be used to fund local, multimodal infrastructure projects that improve accessibility for bicyclists, pedestrians, public transit users, and people using other forms of transportation.
A “Complete Street” is one that provides safe and accessible options for all travel modes and for all people, taking into account the ages and abilities of individuals. The Baker-Polito Administration has now awarded a total of 148 construction grants at $46 million since creating the funding program for Complete Streets in February 2016.
The Baker-Polito Administration included $20 million for the Complete Streets Program as part of the Administration’s $18 billion transportation bond bill. In July, the Administration filed “An Act Authorizing and Accelerating Transportation Investment,” which will provide both resources and tools that will enable MassDOT and the MBTA to repair and modernize the state’s transportation system faster, improving its reliability, sustainability and resiliency.
These Complete Streets funding awards are in addition to $1.1 billion authorized by the Baker-Polito Administration in Chapter 90 local transportation funding for cities and towns since 2015. In addition, $43 million has also been awarded through the Administration’s Municipal Small Bridge Program, which was announced in 2016 and allows municipalities to repair or replace their small bridges which are not eligible for federal funding.
The Complete Streets Funding Program was launched on February 1, 2016. To date, 208 municipalities have approved policies and 173 (nearly 50%) have approved Prioritization Plans. Examples of projects that can be addressed through the program include improved street lighting, radar speed signage, intersection signalization, new multimodal paths and new signals at crosswalks.
The following western Massachusetts communities received funding:
Goshen – East Street Multimodal Transformations $375,778–This project will widen East Street from Main Street to Highland Road to create a shoulder to provide for bicycle and pedestrian traffic. The project also includes new ADA-compliant curb ramps to connect the pedestrian lane with the existing sidewalks.
Northampton – MassCentral Rail Trail Access at North Street $78,605–This project will add a new access point to fill a gap. A bicycle path segment, improved safety signage and pavement markings will complete the gap, and both the access ramp and the adjacent shared use path will have the center line and pavement markings upgraded to current standards.
Sunderland- South Silver Lane Diet and Falls Road Bicycle Accommodation $333,871–This project will narrow South Silver Lane, construct a sidewalk, and bike lanes with buffers on both sides of the street, install signage, new wheelchair ramps and a crosswalk. A second project will install fog line stripping to slow the traffic, install bicycle warning signs, and radar speed feedback signs on Falls Road.