$100 Million in Federal Grant Funds Released for MBTA Project

The project includes six new light rail stations, replacement or rehabilitation of eight bridges, and a new pedestrian/bike path. Construction will begin in 2018, and it is scheduled to open in January 2022.

The U.S. Department of Transportation announced Dec. 21 that it will issue $100 million in grant funding to the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority for its Green Line Extension light rail project. The grant is the first installment of Capital Investment Grants Program funding for the project after the Federal Transit Administration signed a Full Funding Grant Agreement with MBTA for the 4.7-mile light rail line from Cambridge to Medford, Mass.

Construction is scheduled to begin in 2018. With federal funding now in place, MBTA has issued a Notice to Proceed to the GLX design-build team, GLX Constructors. After a sealed price opening last month, GLX Constructors won with its bid, a total of $1.08 billion.

"Governor Charlie Baker's commitment to responsibly manage taxpayer dollars in the building of this project was persuasive," said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao. "The region can now look forward to an enhanced transportation network as the Green Line is extended to serve tens of thousands of area residents daily."

FTA is providing the funds after MBTA completed a series of reviews to redesign the project and contain costs without sacrificing schedule. MBTA's strengthened project management team and governance structure, including a Fiscal and Management Control Board created in 2015 by Gov. Baker and the Massachusetts Legislature, were critical factors in moving the grant forward. "Thanks to the hard work and collaboration of Secretary Chao, State Transportation Secretary Pollack, and the cities of Cambridge, Somerville, and Medford, this important project is moving ahead," Baker said. "The Green Line Extension project will provide important public transit service that will have a transformational impact for this region of the Commonwealth to accommodate riders and spur economic growth."

The funding agreement, signed in 2015, provides $996 million in federal funds toward the $2.3 billion total cost of the extension. "FTA is proud to support the transportation needs of the greater Boston area by helping to extend rail service into some of its most densely populated communities," said FTA Deputy Administrator K. Jane Williams. "The GLX project will provide improved mobility and expanded transit service to riders traveling throughout the MBTA system."

The project includes six new light rail stations, replacement or rehabilitation of eight bridges, and a new pedestrian/bike path and is scheduled to open in January 2022.