President Biden includes $80 million for Madison Bus Rapid Transit system in budget

Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes Conway said the city had requested $80 million, which is half of the expected $160 million cost.
Updated: May. 28, 2021 at 4:03 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - Madison is set to receive $80 million toward construction of the Madison East-West Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system to improve the city’s transportation options under President Joe Biden’s fiscal year 2022 budget.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg announced the funding on Friday, saying Madison’s funding is included in a share of $2.5 billion through a federal transit investment program. Madison’s project is one of 25 rail, BRT and streetcar projects across 12 states.

Buttigieg explained the project in Madison would provide quick and reliable bus services for Madison residents in the corridor along East Washington Avenue, around the State Capitol building, through downtown Madison and the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus, and continuing west on University Avenue to the West Transfer Point or West Towne Mall.

Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes Conway said the city had requested $80 million, which is half of the expected $160 million cost.

“This is great news for Madison!” said Rhodes Conway. “It means we are on track to deliver a fast, efficient and comfortable rapid transit system to our residents – one that will help people get to work, school, shopping and recreation easily and quickly.”

Buttigieg also noted the projects across the U.S. are creating hundreds of construction and operations-related jobs.

“Across the country, communities are seeking to expand public transit as a way to create economic opportunity, improve safety, advance equity, reduce congestion and pollution, and lower the cost of living for their residents,” he said. These capital projects will improve life in 25 communities and are the start of what we hope will be a once-in-a-generation investment to modernize and expand public transit across the country.”

Mayor Rhodes-Conway said the city will work on environmental and design work next for the BRT project. The project will include 27 bus stations, more than eight miles of bus lanes and the purchase of more than 40 buses, as well as enhancements to the bus facility.

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