President Biden will sign the Infrastructure bill this coming Monday, November 15. For the tens of millions of people who depend on public transit every day, this new law is a huge victory.
The investments in public transit -- the largest ever made -- will help begin to ensure safe, reliable, and accessible transportation for everyone, no matter where they live.
When the infrastructure bill is signed into law, a number of important measures will be achieved: increased funding for transit, funding for safe streets measures, small steps towards zero-emissions fleets, some worker protections for transit operators, for example.
The Lawfirm Holland and Knight did a great breakdown of the Infrastructure Plan. If you are interested in seeing a full breakdown, please click here.
According to this Start-Telegram article, "Based on formula funding, Texas is eligible to receive $26.9 billion for federal highway programs, according to the White House. The state can also expect to receive $537 million in bridge and road repairs over the next five years. Texas should also receive approximately $1.2 billion over five years for infrastructure development for airports, and $3.3 billion over five years to improve public transportation options."
New passenger and freight rail projects. The bill provides $66 billion for these projects nationwide. In Texas, Texas Central is working on building a bullet train line between Dallas and Houston. And Amtrak has proposed new rail service connecting Dallas to Fort Worth, Austin, San Antonio and Houston. These projects could potentially benefit from Texas’ share of the $66 billion.
$3.3 billion for public transit in Texas. The bill provides $39 billion for public transit nationwide (the largest such investment in history). According to the White House, “based on formula funding alone, Texas would expect to receive $3.3 billion over five years.” Austin’s Project Connect, Houston’s MetroNext, and other transit projects in Texas could benefit from the funding.
Zero and low emission buses. The bill provides $7.5 billion for this nationwide. Environment Texas says at least 13 school districts in Texas have expressed interest in purchasing electric buses. Meanwhile, nine Texas transit agencies in Texas have already, or plan to, purchase electric buses.
There are still measures that the Federal Government needs to take to continue this important trajectory. For example, this USA Today article questions whether the infrastructure bill has enough money in it to address our public transit needs.
To find out more about the Infrastructure Plan, please attend our upcoming event: