After failing to win a federal grant that would have put nearly $18 million towards improvements on Butler Boulevard, JTA is pushing forward with the changes nonetheless.
So I sat down with CEO Michael Blaylock to talk about how that’s possible.
“We didn’t have the money to build the Dames Point when we started conceiving the idea of a Dames Point Bridge, but today it’s working, it’s a major link to our transportation network. We didn’t have the money to build Butler Boulevard when it was conceived, but today it’s a major, major link in our mobility network,” Blaylock says.
For large transportation projects, Blaylock says they sometimes have to take it one step at a time.
The project in question right now is improving the JTB intersections at Philips Highway and at I-95. This is a $125 million project that aims to improve traffic flow and safety in those areas.
JTA lost its bid for a $17.6 million grant, so instead working with a smaller $2.8 million grant already secured to move forward with design.
“It’s on the radar screen, it is moving forward, and you will see the completion of that interchange a lot sooner than if we just followed the normal course of waiting to see some money fall out of the skies,” Blaylock says.
He says moving forward with this design phase will also make them more competitive for grant funding in the future.