DOT awards $47.5 million in ferry grants

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) announced today approximately $47.5 million in grant awards to selected projects nationwide to improve access, safety, and reliability of U.S. ferries and their passengers. Twelve projects in 12 states will receive funding from the FTA’s Passenger Ferry Grant Program.

“This $47.5 million in federal funding will improve mobility and enhance safety for passenger ferry services across our nation,”

“This $47.5 million in federal funding will improve mobility and enhance safety for passenger ferry services across our nation,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao, said in a statement.

The grants will fund projects to purchase, replace, or rehabilitate passenger ferries, terminals, and related infrastructure and equipment.

“Passenger ferries are an important mode of transportation across the country, providing thousands of people with access to employment, education, and other critical needs,” said FTA Acting Administrator K. Jane Williams.

Among the projects selected to receive funding:

  • The Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA), Jacksonville, Fla., will receive $5.2 million to modernize an existing passenger vessel to ensure a state of good repair and to purchase a new passenger vessel for service expansion.
  • The Casco Bay Island Transit District, Portland, Maine, will receive $3.2 million to purchase a new electric-hybrid propulsion system that will be used to power a new passenger ferry vessel as part of a vehicle replacement project.
  • The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA), Boston, will receive $3.5 million to repair two passenger ferry vessels to ensure continued service reliability, passenger safety, and a state of good repair.

FTA received 19 eligible proposals totaling approximately $102 million in funding requests from 14 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Project proposals were evaluated based on criteria outlined in the Notice of Funding Opportunity. The selected projects will receive $30 million in fiscal year 2020 funding and $17.5 million in prior year funding.

Federal public transportation law (49 USC § 5307(h)), as amended by the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, authorizes FTA’s competitive Passenger Ferry Program through fiscal year 2020.

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