Quick Takes

Four Kentucky infrastructure projects awarded more than $33 million in federal funding

By: - June 28, 2023 5:55 pm

Four transportation infrastructure projects in Kentucky have been awarded federal grants. (Getty Images)

U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg is scheduled to be in Lexington Thursday to highlight more than $33 million in federal grant funding for four transportation infrastructure projects.

According to a U.S. Department of Transportation press release, the funds come from the RAISE discretionary grant fund. Funding in the 2023 Fiscal Year will go to rural and urban areas. The projects funded “will help more people get where they need to be quickly, affordably, and safely.” 

The Kentucky’s projects are in Bellevue, Jackson, Lexington and multiple counties in southcentral Kentucky. 

Of all projects awarded grants, 70% will go to regions that are an area of persistent poverty or a historically disadvantaged community. The department received $15 billion in requests while $2.26 billion was available to award. 

Kentucky’s projects and grant amounts are: 

  • The Community Connections: A Regional Planning Effort Project will receive $600,000 to take inventory of bike and pedestrian facilities, develop a complete street plan in five cities (Franklin, Scottsville, Glasgow, Russellville and Tompkinsville) and explore the viability of an interconnected greenway system as an alternative to motor vehicle travel in the region. Ten counties in the Barren River Area Development District will benefit from the project. 
  • The Northern Kentucky Riverfront Commons Project in Bellevue was awarded $3,774,940 to plan and design an about 20-mile multimodal transportation corridor to reduce vehicle dependence and reduce conflicts between vehicles and non-motorized users.
  • The Panbowl Lake Corridor Project in Jackson will receive $21,153,600 for various corridor improvements, such as adding a lane. Widening the corridor is expected to improve freight mobility on KY 15, a key part of the National Truck Network, and increase overall travel time reliability in Breathitt County. 
  • The Reconnecting Northland-Arlington Project in Lexington was awarded $8,120,000 to replace a railroad bridge overpass on North Broadway, allowing for ADA accessible sidewalks and bicycle facilities and other improvements. The additions are expected to better connect the community by giving more direct downtown access to freight traffic with an increase in vertical clearance and redirecting freight traffic from local roads. 

 Buttigieg said in a statement that the funds help “communities in every state across the country realize their visions for new infrastructure projects.” 

“This round of RAISE grants is helping create a new generation of good-paying jobs in rural and urban communities alike, with projects whose benefits will include improving safety, fighting climate change, advancing equity, strengthening our supply chain, and more,” he said. 

Members of Kentucky’s congressional delegation also praised the funding and projects. 

“When the cities of Jackson, Lexington, and Bellevue asked for my help, I was proud to lend my hand and advocate for their infrastructure needs in Washington,” said Senator Mitch McConnell in a statement. “The health of Kentucky’s economy is closely tied to the strength of our bridges, dams, roads, and railways. These federal funds will support much-needed projects across the Commonwealth that will serve Kentuckians for years to come.”

Congressman Andy Barr, whose district includes Lexington, said in a statement that upgrades for the North Broadway corridor “will significantly enhance economic development and public safety in the Northern side of Lexington for decades to come.” 

“I am proud to have supported this competitive grant application through the Department of Transportation and look forward to seeing the much-needed improvements,” Barr said.

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McKenna Horsley
McKenna Horsley

McKenna Horsley covers state politics for the Kentucky Lantern. She previously worked for newspapers in Huntington, West Virginia, and Frankfort, Kentucky. She is from northeastern Kentucky.