Massachusetts

Baker: Massachusetts to Get $9.5B in Infrastructure Funds

The $9.5 billion comes over a five-year period and will include $5.4 billion for highway funding, $2.2 billion for MBTA funding, $591 million in Regional Transit Authority funding and $1.4 billion for environmental projects

Massachusetts can look forward to an influx of about $9.5 billion to help build and repair its transportation systems under the federal infrastructure law approved last year, Gov. Charlie Baker said Thursday.

Baker offered spending details during a visit to the University of Massachusetts-Lowell, nothing that $170 million will go toward replacing the nearby Rourke Bridge.

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The project is part of an anticipated $3 billion bridge program over the next several years using a combination of federal infrastructure dollars and state money. As part of Thursday’s announcement, the administration released a list of 146 bridge projects, representing 181 individual structures, set to be funded.

Over a five-year period, Baker said, the federal law will deliver about $9.5 billion in total funding to Massachusetts including $5.4 billion in highway formula funds, $2.2 billion in MBTA formula funds and $591 million in Regional Transit Authority formula funds, as well as $1.4 billion for environmental projects.

Baker compared the funding windfall to Christmas morning for the state’s roads, bridges, public transportation and environmental infrastructure.

“Christmas was probably the day this thing got signed,” he said. “Now we’re just in the process of starting to open some of the packages.”

The new law also allows states to compete for a portion of an additional $110 billion to help finance both locally significant projects and major undertakings like the plan to replace the Sagamore and Bourne bridges connecting Cape Cod to the rest of Massachusetts.

Baker said the federal infrastructure dollars will build on the more than $18 billion in investments the administration has made in the state’s roads, bridges and public transportation systems to reduce congestion, modernize existing transportation systems and expand service for the entire state.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for us. We should take full advantage it,” the Republican said. “I personally love the fact that it is a bipartisan infrastructure law. We need more of those.”

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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