Milwaukee (East-West Corridor)

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East-West Corridor

Milwaukee, Wisconsin

(November 1996)


The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) is evaluating alternatives in a 35-mile corridor which extends from Glendale and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UW-M), southwest through the central business district (CBD) and the near north side of Milwaukee, to the western suburbs and the city of Waukesha.

A Major Investment Study-Draft Environmental Impact Statement (MIS/DEIS) was completed in October 1996. It evaluated various LRT alignments and termini, special lanes for carpools and buses, Interstate highway modernization, TSM, and a No Build alternative. Several combination alternatives employing different technologies in different parts of the corridor are also under consideration.


Section 3035(oo) of ISTEA directed FTA to enter into a multiyear grant agreement with the State of Wisconsin for $200 million. The grant agreement would cover construction of an initial segment of the locally preferred transit alternative identified in the Major Investment Study.

WisDOT began an alternatives analysis (AA) in the Central Milwaukee East-West Corridor in 1991. In 1994, the AA was converted to an MIS, which includes an analysis of both transit and highway elements. The technical work associated with the MIS is complete. A preferred alternative will be chosen in early 1997. A $3.0 million reallocated appropriation will be reprogrammed to other projects in early 1997.

WisDOT's preliminary funding strategy assumes $241 million of Interstate Transfer funding in accordance with Section 1045 of ISTEA. It also assumes that Section 5309 New Start funding will be sought for 80 percent of the transit capital cost. Matching funds for the funds pursuant to Section 1045 and Section 5309 are to be provided by either the state, local jurisdictions, or both depending on the alternative chosen. There are no specific financial plans at present.