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Senator Collins Announces $26.6 Million for Three Transportation Projects in Maine

Senator Collins has secured more than $160 million for Maine transportation projects through this grant program since 2009


Washington, D.C.—U.S. Senator Susan Collins, the Chairman of the Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee, announced today that Maine will receive a total of $26.6 million to fund three transportation projects.  The projects—which will be funded through the BUILD program that was previously known as TIGER—will improve infrastructure statewide as well as create jobs, reduce traffic congestion, and increase safety.


U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao called Senator Collins this morning to notify her that these projects for which Senator Collins strongly advocated were approved.


“Improving Maine’s transportation infrastructure is one of my top priorities.  I am delighted to announce this $26.6 million investment that will benefit communities across the state,” said Senator Collins, the Chairman of the Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee.  “These projects will enhance the safety and efficiency of our transportation network while growing our economy and helping Mainers reach their homes and jobs more quickly.”


“We are deeply grateful to Senator Collins and Secretary Chao for their support of Waterville’s revitalization through the awarding of this BUILD grant,” said Colby College President David A. Greene.  “This grant will be a catalyst for a safe, beautiful, and vibrant Main Street. Our downtown businesses will prosper with these changes and job growth and opportunity will continue to be the cornerstone of Waterville’s resurgence. This is a great day for the city of Waterville and for all those who are committed to seeing this community thrive.”


“Thank you to Senator Susan Collins who continues to put the infrastructure needs of the State of Maine on the front burner,” said Maine Department of Transportation Commissioner David Bernhardt.  “As these grants demonstrate, transportation is not all about roads and bridges, but rather a vast network that is crucial to help keep Maine’s economy moving forward.”


The three Maine transportation projects that will receive funding are as follows:


  1. Western Gateways Project. The Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT) will receive an $11,027,500 BUILD grant for a $22 million project to repair, resurface, improve drainage, and enhance pedestrian safety to a network of three key roadways in three rural towns: Kingfield, Woodstock, and Fryeburg. MDOT will increase the safety of these roads for motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians and provide access to rural retail, commerce, employment centers, shipping routes, and recreation points critical to the economy. The proposal will meet ADA and MDOT’s standards for sidewalk, crossing, and bike lane safety.


  1. Waterville Main Street Revitalization Project. The City of Waterville will receive a $7,371,200 BUILD grant for a $9.2 million project to make infrastructure improvements in the city’s downtown area. The project includes: changing traffic direction from one-way to two-way on two downtown roads, making improvements to intersections, and updating sidewalks, plantings, and benches. In addition, the funding will allow the city to complete its Riverwalk project. 


  1. Traffic Mobility Improvements Project. MDOT will receive an $8,241,100 BUILD grant for a $16.5 million project to replace and enhance 104 of the 804 traffic signals statewide with updated technology. This includes traffic signal systems; infrared camera vehicle detection at intersections; fiber interconnect wire; emergency pre-emption devices to improve fire, safety, and law enforcement navigation through signals; back-plates with reflective striping; communication to the Traffic Management Center; ADA improvements; and infrastructure to support autonomous vehicles. MDOT believes these upgrades will help maintain safe and efficient traffic flow and proposes to maintain all traffic signal detection, rather than leaving it to municipalities.


BUILD provides federal assistance for vital transportation projects across the country. Since the program’s inception as TIGER in 2009, Senator Collins has secured more than $160 million for key transportation investments throughout Maine, including bridges, seaports, and rail projects.  Maine grant applications through this highly competitive program have been successful in every funding round due to Senator Collins’ advocacy.


This is the 10th funding round of TIGER/BUILD grants.  The U.S. Department of Transportation received a total of $11 billion in requests from more than 800 applications this round.


As Chairman of the Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee, Senator Collins has championed robust funding for the BUILD program.