February 1, 2023
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transportation Administration (FTA) last week announced $384 million in federal funding from President Biden’s bipartisan infrastructure bill. This is to expand and improve ferry services in communities across the United States and accelerate the transition to zero-emission transportation. This funding should benefit the millions of Americans who rely on coastal waters, rivers, bays, and other bodies of water to connect to their communities.
In total, the FTA has awarded 23 grants in 11 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The grant will fund projects such as replacement of old vessels, expansion of the fleet and construction of new terminals and docks. For Alaska, the award represents an investment of approximately $286 million in the Alaska Marine Highway System (AMHS), which serves remote areas throughout the state. About $100 million in state subsidies will be used for low- and no-emission ferries to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector.See the full list of grants here.
“These grants will allow ferry services in the communities most dependent on waterways – often in more rural and remote areas – while reducing climate pollution and connecting people to jobs, services and urban centers. is improving and expanding. U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg.
The DOT said the funds made available through its three FTA competitive grant programs will help reduce emissions by facilitating ferry services in rural areas, modernizing urban ferry systems, and accelerating the adoption of zero-emission technologies. said to reduce.
FTA Rural Ferry Service Program Provides states with competitive funding for ferry services in rural areas. The FTA has awarded him $252.4 million to his eight projects in his four states.
FTA Electric or Low Emission Ferry Pilot Program We provide competitive financing for electric or low-emission ferries and charging facilities that use alternative fuels or onboard energy storage systems to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The FTA awards him $97.6 million for seven projects in seven states.
FTA Passenger Ferry Subsidy Program Establish new ferry services and support capital projects to repair and modernize ferry vessels, terminals and urban facilities and equipment. The FTA awards his $34.4 million to her eight projects in six states and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
“Today’s announcement represents a record amount of support for transit ferries in our country,” said FTA Administrator Nuria Fernandez. “And thanks to the president’s bipartisan infrastructure law, for the first time, we can offer competitive subsidies to local passenger ferry services to help ferry operators reduce their climate impact. can.”
Some selected ferry projects include:
- The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, which has received six grants for approximately $286 million, will build passenger ferries, replace or modernize older ships, and perform critical dock upgrades in several communities. increase. This grant will improve the condition and quality of AMHS, which has traveled 3,500 miles and serves 35 communities. Especially suitable for people living in remote areas with high transportation costs.
- The Maine Department of Transportation will receive $28 million through the Electric or Low Emission Ferry Pilot Program to build a hybrid-electric vessel to replace a 35-year-old vessel at the end of its useful life. The new hybrid-electric vessel will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote environmental sustainability for the approximately 600 residents of Islesboro Island, a rural community in upper Penobscot Bay that relies on passenger ferry services.
- The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) received $6.6 million through the Passenger Ferry Grant Program to modernize the Hingham Ferry Dock, improve safety and accessibility, and keep it in good condition. By stabilizing ferry docks, restructuring walkways, upgrading lighting, safety and security systems, and facilitating backup power, MBTA will increase ferry capacity, operational flexibility and resilience.
Projects were selected for funding based on the criteria set forth in the Opportunity Funding Notice.as a response to The FTA received 47 eligible applications in 16 states and one territory, totaling approximately $602 million in applications.