MTA To Receive $10M Federal Grant For Bus Improvements - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

MTA To Receive $10M Federal Grant For Bus Improvements

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Metro Transit Authority has been awarded a $10 million U.S. Department of Transportation grant to improve and expand the bus service into downtown Nashville.

Federal Transit Administrator Peter Rogoff along with Nashville Mayor Karl Dean and MTA Chief Executive Officer Paul Ballard announced the grant on Friday morning.

The $13.8 million project includes the installation of upgraded traffic signal equipment and safety enhancement that will improve bus service and provide a more comfortable ride for transit users. 

Rogoff said the TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) grant will make a "less congested, more prosperous Nashville."

The money will be used to upgrade traffic signals along the busy Murfreesboro Road corridor so that they turn green for buses. Buses also will be equipped with transponders that will allow passengers to check their cell phones to see when the next bus is arriving.

Additionally, the city will install new bus shelters, pedestrian improvements, and intelligent transportation systems devices throughout the transit system. That will include real-time arrival kiosks to alert passengers when the next bus will arrive.

Rogoff said they received 585 applications for the grants, but Nashville was one of 52 cities that were approved. The 52 grants in 37 states total $474 million.

The project is really bus rapid transit light, because it does not involve dedicated bus lanes. Another project in the works that would dedicate lanes to mass transit, called The Amp, is facing well-organized opposition. Several protesters brought "Stop the Amp" signs to the Friday announcement.

Federal Transit Administrator Peter Rogoff said The Amp is under consideration for funding.

(The Associated Press Contributed To This Report.)

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