By Maria Saporta
At long last, Atlanta will get a streetcar thanks to persistent efforts to go after federal funding.
U.S. Rep. John Lewis’ office has just sent out the following press release:
U.S. Representative John Lewis Elated Over Funding for
Atlanta Streetcar Construction
Atlanta, GA – Congressman John Lewis, 5th Congressional District Georgia, is pleased to announce the funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) of more than $47 million to construct the Georgia Transit Connector; Atlanta Streetcar Project designed to provide a transportation link for the downtown Atlanta area.
This grant is the direct result of countless meetings, conference calls, and written correspondence between U.S. Rep. John Lewis and Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, in close coordination with Mayor Kasim Reed and the City of Atlanta. In a letter sent to Secretary LaHood in August of this year, Rep. Lewis expressed his strong support for the Georgia Transit Connector Project citing such benefits as providing much-needed services connecting the Auburn Historic District to downtown Atlanta and MARTA.
“I’d like to thank my good friend and former colleague Secretary Ray LaHood for his continued support in this effort. In my conversation with Secretary LaHood this morning he reiterated his belief that it was a good and necessary project and one that deserved federal funding. Not only does this project offer citizens and visitors to the downtown area another option for transportation, it will also provide green jobs and support economic development,” stated Congressman Lewis.
Located in the heart of Downtown Atlanta, the Georgia Transit Connector Project which will run a span of approximately 2.6 miles will connect Peachtree Street with Sweet Auburn Avenue shuttling more than 4.7 million tourists each year and a large mass of local residents through the area.
Currently, Congressman John Lewis is working with Secretary LaHood as well as local representatives for a joint official announcement next week.