12/08/2015

   
President signs 5-year FAST Act surface transportation bill

From "Metro"

**NOTE: There are various reports as to the amount of the bill, with Passenger Transport reporting the bill is worth $281 billion.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - With the most recent extension deadline about to expire, President Barack Obama signed the five-year, $305 billion Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act) on Friday, reported The Hill.

The new law, paid for with gas tax revenue and a package of $70 billion in offsets from other areas of the federal budget, will invest $61 billion in the nation’s public transportation systems, according to American Public Transportation Association (APTA).

“As the first long-term surface transportation bill in ten years, the significance of this legislation cannot be overstated,” said APTA President/CEO Michael Melaniphy. “This is excellent news for America’s public transportation systems, their riders, and the small, medium, and large communities they serve. A well-funded, long-term surface transportation authorization is critical to the economic competitiveness and prosperity of our nation’s communities. To sum it up, wherever public transportation goes, community grows.”

The Administration had been critical of Congress for passing short-term extensions, with Obama noting upon signing the bill that lawmakers fell short of the six-year, $478 billion proposal he had sent to Congress earlier this year.        READ MORE >

Fla.'s JTA sets launch date for new BRT service

Fla.’s Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA) is gearing up to launch the First Coast Flyer(tm) bus rapid transit (BRT) “Green Line” on Dec. 7. The Green Line will operate between Rosa Parks Transit Station and Interstate 295 along Lem Turner with stops at major destinations to include FSCJ, VA Clinic, UF Health and Gateway Town Center.

The Flyer will connect customers to jobs, education, healthcare and more with features as unique at the region it serves. A mobile ticketing application (mobile app) called MyJTA will also launch along with the new service.

The 9.4 mile Green Line on the North Corridor will feature direct, high-frequency service; 18 branded stations; complimentary Wi-Fi, a Park-n-Ride lot, and real-time bus arrival information. It will take customers longer distances more quickly, make fewer stops, and offer 10-minute frequency during weekday peak hours and 15-minute frequency in weekday off peak hours.

The $33.2 million project is funded by the Federal Transit Administration, Florida Department of Transportation and the JTA.

“The First Coast Flyer(tm)will have a direct and positive impact on the quality of life for our customers,” said JTA CEO Nathaniel P. Ford Sr. “Our community deserves a world class transportation system. The Flyer is the latest initiative in the process of transforming transportation in Northeast Florida.”

The First Coast Flyer is planned in five-phases and serves as the backbone to the regional transit system. When completed in 2019, the Flyer system will cover 57 miles of destination travel, and will be the largest BRT system of its kind in the Southeast.

The branded Gillig compressed natural gas buses serving this corridor have a sleek, aerodynamic design that incorporates a raised, raked-back front cap blended into a full length, contoured roofline. Its modern profile makes a distinguished statement. The flying fish embodies the “Flyer” part of the name. Like the flying fish, the vehicles in the First Coast Flyer system will move smoothly along, gliding to their destinations.

 

 

 

 

 

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