May 23, 2012

TriMet gets $745.2M for light rail

The Federal Transit Administration will provide $745.2 million for TriMet's Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Transit Project (PMLR). This commits the federal government to provide 50% of the cost of the $1.49 billion project.

The project will create up to 14,500 direct and indirect jobs and generate up to $573 million in personal earnings.

“This line will provide much-needed connections in south Portland, a part of the city where transportation access is extremely constrained,” said Portland Mayor Sam Adams. “The project will unlock development, connect major institutions and spur job creation. We are grateful to the Federal Transit Administration, our Congressional delegation, and our local partners for bringing this long-held vision to reality.”

The PMLR is the region’s sixth MAX construction project and will expand the rail system to 60 miles.

After a decade of planning and community outreach, project partners celebrated the final agreement necessary before full construction gets underway. Some long-lead items, such as the light rail bridge, began construction earlier to maintain the project schedule.

Federal and local funds make up more than 95% of the cost of construction; TriMet’s share is less than 5%. The PMLR project is the second MAX extension into Clackamas County after the MAX Green Line opened in 2009.

The 7.3-mile project is the region’s sixth MAX construction project to be built and extends from the terminus of the MAX Green and Yellow lines at Portland State University in Downtown Portland to South Waterfront, SE Portland, Milwaukie and North Clackamas County.

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