Tennessee transportation officials announced Wednesday the startup of a new funding program to help support local construction of sidewalks, bus shelters, park-and-ride facilities as well as bicycle lanes.
"This fund is designed to help communities provide transportation choices for people across Tennessee," Transportation Commissioner John Schroer said in a news release. "Improving the facilities for walking, biking and transit is essential to the continued growth and success of our towns and cities."
The Multimodal Access Fund will receive 95 percent of its money from the state with local matching funds accounting for the remaining 5 percent.
Total project costs are not to exceed $1 million.
"It can be incredibly difficult for cities and towns to fund projects of this nature," said Assistant Commissioner Toks Omishakin, chief of Environment and Planning. "We hope this program will allow communities to move forward with projects that will benefit both residents and the environment."
Project requests for funding must be submitted through Rural and Metropolitan Planning Organizations (RPOs/MPOs). Applications for the first round of funding will be accepted starting Friday and must be received by the Department of Transportation no later than Dec. 20.
Copyright 2013 - Chattanooga Times Free Press, Tenn.