Lehigh Valley Vying for PCTI Funds Once More
PennDOT’s Pennsylvania Community Transportation Initiative is in full swing once again, though the pot of money is much smaller this time around. As some of you may recall (especially if you attended RenewLV’s brown-bag session last year on the topic), PCTI is the effort to fund community-oriented transportation projects throughout the Commonwealth. PCTI is part of PennDOT’s Smart Transportation campaign that aims to link land-use planning with innovative and sustainable transportation solutions. Last year, four Lehigh Valley communities received funding: Allentown, Bethlehem, Easton, and Hellertown (listen to RenewLV’s podcast of the Community and Transportation brown-bag session and see the Governor’s press release for more information).
This year, 16 Lehigh Valley applications were submitted, reports the Express-Times. Easton is once again applying, this time with the project of updating Centre Square. Sarah Cassi writes:
Mayor Sal Panto Jr. said the beautification project will include new signs, traffic signals and handicap-accessible sidewalk ramps. It will continue work slated for South Third Street, Panto said.
Panto said the goal is to make traffic “smoother and calmer,” according to information from the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission revealed at its meeting Monday in Hanover Township, Lehigh County.
The city has applied for a $1.5 million grant from the Pennsylvania Community Transportation Initiative program to help with the work.
The PCTI fund totals only $24 million this time around, less than half of what it was last time around ($60 million). Other local projects that are vying for money are Allentown’s Hamilton Street project and the continued work on the Bethlehem Greenway (this time connecting it to Hellertown).
Lehigh Valley residents: cross your fingers that we see a large chunk of that money come our way. Given our success last time around, I have good feelings for this year.
Once again, listen to our Community and Transportation podcast on this topic. It includes comments from last year’s project representatives, as well as an intro to Smart Transportation by PennDOT spokesman Ron Young.