Thursday, December 21, 2017

USDOT issues first installment of MBTA Green Line extension grant

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USDOT issues first installment of MBTA Green Line extension grant USDOT

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) will be issued the first installment of federal grant, $100 million for the Green Line Extension (GLX) light-rail project.

 

MBTA signed a $996-million Full Funding Grant Agreement with the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) in January 2015 for the 4.7-mile light-rail line from Cambridge to Medford with a total estimated cost of $2.3 billion.

"[Massachusetts] Gov. Charlie Baker's commitment to responsibly manage taxpayer dollars in the building of this project was persuasive," said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao. "The region can now look forward to an enhanced transportation network as the Green Line is extended to serve tens of thousands of area residents daily."

FTA is providing the funds from the Capital Investment Grants (CIG) Program after MBTA completed a series of reviews to redesign the GLX project to contain costs without sacrificing schedule. The U.S. Department of Transportation explains that MBTA's strengthened project management team and governance structure, including a Fiscal and Management Control Board created in 2015, were critical factors in moving the FFGA grant forward.

The Green Line Extension Project was put on hold due to cost overruns in late 2015. The MBTA redesigned and restructured the delivery model and secured cost guarantees from the firms bidding to build the project.

"Thanks to the hard work and collaboration of Secretary Chao, State Transportation Secretary Pollack, and the cities of Cambridge, Somerville and Medford, this important project is moving ahead," said Gov. Baker. "The Green Line Extension project will provide important public transit service that will have a transformational impact for this region of the Commonwealth to accommodate riders and spur economic growth."

The project adheres to the scope and benefits identified in the FFGA, including six new light-rail stations, replacement or rehabilitation of eight bridges and a new pedestrian/bike path. The GLX is projected to open in January 2022.

"FTA is proud to support the transportation needs of the greater Boston area by helping to extend rail service into some of its most densely populated communities," said FTA Deputy Administrator K. Jane Williams. "The GLX project will provide improved mobility and expanded transit service to riders traveling throughout the MBTA system."

In November, the MBTA Green Line Extension team selected the joint venture of GLX Constructors to carry out the design and construction work on the project. The JV consists of Fluor Enterprises, Inc., The Middlesex Corp., Herzog Contracting Corp. and Balfour Beatty Infrastructure, Inc.