Transportation Bill Earmarks Funds For Bruce Freeman Rail Trail
The $1.5 billion bill helps build infrastructure that strengthens the state’s economy over the long term, governor says.
Gov. Deval Patrick called a $1.5 billion transportation bond bill that includes funding for the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail "what the state needs to strengthen its economy and "quality of life for the long term.”
Patrick signed the bill on Aug. 9.
“Our transportation infrastructure had suffered from years of neglect, so this administration started rebuilding roads, rails and bridges in every corner of our state and creating thousands of jobs," Patrick said after he enacted the bill, which enjoyed the strong support of the Legislature, passing the House by a vote of 150-2 on July 31, the last day of the session.
The bond bill ensures funding for many projects already under way and allots money for the planning of future improvements across the state.
It also continues funding for the final year of 2008's five-year Accelerated Bridge Program, the largest statewide infrastructure investment program ever, according to the administration. The bridge program has reduced the number of structurally deficient bridges by almost 20 percent, the governor's office said.
While the bill did not address any projects in Westford, $200,000 of non-federal funding was earmarked for Phase 2B of the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail in Acton and Concord, adding to the federal funding allocated for the trail several weeks ago by the Boston Municipal Planning Organization.