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The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) received a grand total of $9.8 billion worth of requests for the seventh round of Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grants for transportation infrastructure projects. The amount is almost 20 times the $500 million set aside for the latest round of TIGER funding, department officials announced yesterday.Among the 625 applications received this year, 60 percent are road projects, 18 percent are transit projects and 8 percent are rail projects. Port and bicycle-pedestrian applications each represented 6 percent of the total, according to a USDOT press release. USDOT received eligible construction applications from all 50 states and U.S. territories. In 2014, the department received 565 TIGER grant applications.The TIGER program offers federal funding possibilities for large multimodal projects that are considered “transformative.” The federal dollars leverage money from private-sector partners, state and local government, metropolitan planning organizations and transit agencies.The $584.1 million awarded under TIGER 2014 helped fund 72 capital and planning projects in 46 states and the District of Columbia."The consistent number of high quality projects we’re unable to fund through TIGER every year demonstrates the need for Congress to act to give more communities access to this vital lifeline," U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said in a statement. Since 2009, the TIGER grant program provided a combined $4.1 billion to 342 projects in all 50 states, D.C. and Puerto Rico. During the previous six rounds, USDOT received more than 6,000 applications requesting more than $124 billion.
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