December 12, 2023

Kilmer Announces $600K in Federal Funding for Safer Streets and Improved Accessibility in Tacoma

TACOMA, WA – Today, U.S. Representative Derek Kilmer (WA-06) announced that the City of Tacoma will receive $600,000 in new federal funds through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) Safe Streets and Roads for All (SS4A) Grant Program. The funding is made possible by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, legislation Rep. Kilmer supported and the largest long-term investment in America’s infrastructure and competitiveness in nearly a century.

“All people deserve to feel safe on our roads, including folks with disabilities,” said Rep. Kilmer. “I’m thrilled to see the impact of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law right here in our neck of the woods. I’m also proud to be a partner in this effort, which will improve accessibility for people with disabilities and improve safety for everyone on the road – drivers, passengers, pedestrians, cyclists, and everyone who’s on the move.”

“Since adopting its Vision Zero Goals in early 2020, the City of Tacoma has been working hard to identify strategies and evaluate locations in Tacoma to implement traffic calming measures for the greatest impact,” said Tacoma Mayor Victoria Woodards. “These federal dollars will help us implement those strategies and ensure that we can keep everyone who uses our roads safe by eliminating traffic deaths. I would like to thank our federal delegation for consistently supporting our community and advocating for efforts.”

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the City of Tacoma is home to more than 217,000 residents, with 11% of those being under the age of 65 years old and living with a disability. Much of the City’s transportation infrastructure is not constructed to urban or ADA standards, making it particularly difficult for pedestrians, bicyclists, and other active transportation modes, as well as those with disabilities, to travel to their destinations.

This new federal investment will help the City conduct supplemental planning to develop an ADA Transition Plan, including measurements of accessibility criteria for sidewalks, curb ramps, traffic signals, bus stops, and driveway curb cuts in the public right-of-way, as well as an assessment of existing policies and procedures. This will allow the City to develop an action plan to implement a Vision Zero strategy to achieve zero traffic deaths and serious injuries on roadways by 2035. This plan will create new mobility networks that improve livability and positive health outcomes throughout the region.

Applications for the next round of SS4A are expected to open in February 2024. Federally recognized Tribal governments that apply can use Tribal Transportation Funds for non-Federal matches.

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law more than doubled funding for surface transportation programs that improve roadway safety. This announcement joins a suite of roadway safety investments – including the $9 billion in funding that states have received through the Highway Safety Improvement Program and the $570 million in funding that will improve safety at over 400 rail crossings across the country.

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