More than $7 Million Awarded for Bike Path Projects
Governor Christie Whitman and Transportation Commissioner James Weinstein today announced the award of $7.3 million in grants for more than 54 miles of local bicycle projects throughout the state. The monetary amount represents a portion of the $10 million in discretionary funds available for such projects through the New Jersey Department of Transportation’s (NJDOT) FY99 Local Aid program.
"Transportation, at every level, is crucial not just to our economy but to our quality of life. Last year I proposed that we create some 2,000 miles of bike paths over a 12-year period," Governor Whitman said. "The investments that we make today in preserving and enhancing our quality of life will pay for itself and then some, especially for our future generations. Today, we are taking a very positive step in that direction by providing funds that will build bike path projects that ultimately give us more recreational opportunities and continues the commitment to improve our environment."
"A transportation system as complex as New Jersey’s should not only get people to and from communities, but it should support community objectives," said Commissioner Weinstein. "These are all worthwhile projects that have been developed at the local level based on local support for them. And, in a state that is as heavily traveled as New Jersey, we as responsible policy makers need to do all we can to promote alternative forms of transportation."
The NJDOT’s Local Aid Program is supported by the New Jersey Transportation Trust Fund. Under legislation signed into law by Governor Whitman in 1995, the Transportation Trust Fund was renewed and local aid funding was increased from $100 million to $130 million per year. The Local Aid program was increased by $10 million, for a total of $140 million, for FY98 through a special legislative appropriation.