FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
July 27, 2015
Tracy Hadden Loh
Director of Research
As of 2014, 97% of Available TAP Funds Were Spent on Pedestrian and Bike Projects
WASHINGTON, D.C. – In fiscal year 2014, 97% of Transportation Alternative Program (TAP) funds went to active transportation projects and programs, according to the 2014 Transportation Enhancements and Alternatives Spending Report published by the Transportation Alternatives Data Exchange at the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (TrADE @ RTC).
This percentage is a significant increase over the cumulative rate of 67% from fiscal years 1992 through 2014 spent on walking and biking using funds from Transportation Enhancements (TE).
Major changes, brought on by the passage of Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21), and the short-term extensions that followed, affected how states use federal funds. As a result, a greater percentage available funds have gone to walking and biking projects.
“This is a stunning shift. While it is unclear whether the trend will hold as TAP matures, the sharp focus on trails, walking and biking further proves the central importance of TAP as backbone funding for active transportation projects across the nation,” said Kevin Mills, senior vice president of policy at Rails-to-Trails Conservancy.The report also analyzes state use of federal transportation funding from 1992 through 2014 and provides transparency and valuable comparisons to inform transportation decision-making.
“Citizens, transportation officials and legislators can see how every penny was spent,” added Mills. “The record makes clear that TAP provides outstanding bang for the buck in improving every state and district in America. We also see which states have gained the most, by making TAP a priority."
Other findings include:
- Wyoming, Delaware, and Rhode Island are top implementers, with Indiana and Minnesota close behind.
- “Most Improved” is Massachusetts, which had a 5-year cumulative obligation rate of 110% in 2014, compared to 39% in 2011.
To see how state funding compares, download the full report on the TRADE website.
The mission of the Transportation Alternatives Data Exchange at the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy is to track TE and TAP implementation. TrADE provides a web-accessible database and annual report on national and state-by-state funding and expenditures. Through TrADE, RTC’s goal is to make the Transportation Alternatives Program the most accountable and transparent transportation funding source in the United States.
Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, a nonprofit organization with more than 160,000 members and supporters, is the nation's largest trails organization dedicated to connecting people and communities by creating a nationwide network of public trails, many from former rail lines. Founded in 1986, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy's national office is located in Washington, D.C., with regional offices in California, Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania. For more information visit www.railstotrails.org.