The President's budget recommendations include $2.5 billion for FTA's grant programs, up $400 million from 2014 budget requests and an indicator, in particular, of the popularity of "New Starts" funding. Overall funding of nearly $91 billion was requested for the Department of Transportation within the proposed FY15 budget, unveiled Tuesday, March 4, 2014.
The FY15 budget recommends $1.4 billion for existing New Starts Full Funding Grant Agreements (FFGAs) and $578.2 million for proposed New FFGAs. Some $275 million is identified for Core Capacity projects, while nearly $200 million is slated for "Small Starts" Grant Agreements, which have served as seed money for small streetcar startups and bus system improvments. Another $37 million is targeted for for management and oversight.
Funds requested for projects with existing New Starts FFGAs include:
$100 million for Los Angeles's Regional Connector Transit Corridor;
$150 million for San Francisco's controversial Third Street Light Rail-Central Subway Project;
$150 million for San Jose's Silicon Valley Berryessa Extension
$150 million advancing Denver's ongoing RTD Eagle P3 project;
$250 million for Honolulu's elevated High Capacity Transit Corridor;
$109.1 million to wrap up St. Paul, Minn.'s Central Corridor Light Rail Transit Project, with the line set to open early this summer;
$100 million for Charlotte, N.C.'s Northeast Corridor Blue Line Light Rail Transit extension;
$47.2 million for New York's East Side Access project, linking the Long Island Rail Road with Grand Central Terminal;
$100 million for Portland, Ore.'s Milwaukie LRT extension; and
$89.6 million for Seattle's University Link LRT Extension.
Recommended New Starts Projects include:
$100 million for Los Angeles's Westside Subway Extension, Section 1;
$63.2 million for Phase II of Orlando, Fla.'s SunRail regional rail service;
$100 million for MBTA's Green Line LRT extension;
$100 million for Baltimore's Red Line;
$100 million for Maryland's Purple Line LRT project, spanning the northwest suburbs of Washington, D.C.;
$65 million for the currently stymied Columbia River Crossing Project, a proposed bridge linking Oregon and Washington states and including LRT on the span; and
$50 million for Fort Worth, Tex.'s TEX Rail project.
As separate line items, the budget recommends $275 million for Chicago Transit Authority's Red and Purple Line Modernization Project, identified as Core Capacity Projects.
Another $49 million is identified for Fort Lauderdale, Fla.'s Wave Streetcar Project.