U.S. Transportation Secretary LaHood Announces $116 Million to Help Utah Complete 70 Miles of New Light Rail Service in Salt Lake Region

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Final Leg of TRAX Light Rail Adds Jobs to 3,100 Already Created

12/12/2011
Contact: David Longo
(202) 366-0608

DRAPER, Utah – U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood today announced an agreement to provide $116 million from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to extend TRAX light rail transit service from downtown Salt Lake City into the suburb of Draper. The 3.8-mile extension is the final project in a bold seven-year, seventy-mile effort to significantly expand transit options for residents and commuters in the Salt Lake City area, one of the nation’s fastest growing cities.

"When completed, Salt Lake’s transit system will connect dozens of communities along the fast-growing Wasatch Front, support new economic development, and generate thousands of good jobs for the community," said Secretary LaHood. "This is a terrific example of how investing in our transportation systems lays a strong foundation for our nation’s continued economic growth."

FTA Administrator Peter Rogoff signed the funding agreement during a ceremony today at the site of the new Draper Town Center Station. Utah State Representative and UTA Board Chair Greg Hughes, Draper Mayor Darrell Smith, Salt Lake County Mayor Peter Corroon, Utah Transit Authority (UTA) General Manager Michael Allegra and other local officials were also on hand for the ceremony.

"FTA has proudly supported Utah’s vision to create a new, modern transit system in just seven years, delivered on time and on budget," FTA Administrator Rogoff said. "The last leg of this effort means that roughly 70,000 commuters traveling daily between Sandy and Draper will have seamless, convenient access to downtown jobs without sitting in I-15 traffic."

The Draper Light Rail Project, a 3.8-mile extension of UTA’s current TRAX service, will add jobs to the 3,100 construction-related jobs already created. The project, which includes three new stations with park-and-ride-facilities, will run parallel to the heavily traveled Interstate 15 corridor and make it easier for suburban residents to commute to jobs in Salt Lake City.

The total cost for the Draper extension project is $194 million. Construction is already under way and expected to be completed in December 2013

The extension of TRAX service to Draper is the final project in UTA’s Frontlines 2015 Program, a $2.9 billion program to build 70 miles of rail in seven years and place a major transit stop within reach of every resident in the UTA service area. Four new light rail lines, one new commuter rail line and a new light rail maintenance facility will more than double UTA’s existing rail system. Including today’s funding announcement, FTA has committed approximately $570 million in total to the Frontlines 2015 Program, including $25 million through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

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