Press Release: BROWN SECURES $13 MILLION FOR LOCAL PROJECTS

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WASHINGTON — As part of the 2006 Transportation Equity Act-A Legacy for Users (TEA-LU), Rep. Sherrod Brown (D-Lorain) secured $13,017,728 to help fund ten projects in the 13th Congressional District. Reauthorized every six years, TEA-LU allocates highway and transit funding throughout the United States. TEA-LU was approved by a 412 to 6 vote in the House Friday. Brown voted in favor of the measure.

"The highway bill is good news not just for highways, but for public transit throughout northeastern Ohio," Brown said. "Coupled with local support, this money will bolster economic development and go a long way toward filling transportations funding gaps in Summit, Lorain and Cuyahoga Counties."

SUMMIT COUNTY

* Manchester Road, City of Akron: $3,200,000 — Reconstruct the existing pavement on Manchester Road (State Route 93) between Waterloo Road and Kenmore Boulevard. Manchester Road is a major artery in the southwest quadrant of the city. It is scheduled for reconstruction in 2006.

* White Pond Drive, City of Akron: $800,000 — Reconstruct and relocate the interchange of White Pond Drive and Frank Boulevard. Commercial, business and residential developments along White Pond Drive have caused increases in traffic volumes. This project will accommodate those increases and improve conditions for continuing growth. The relocation of Frank Boulevard will move the existing traffic around a quiet residential neighborhood.

* Akron METRO Regional Transit Authority’s Downtown Multi-Modal Transportation Center: $3,344,000 — Build an intermodal transportation center to integrate four major forms of public transportation serving the Akron area. Approximately 2,500 transit users travel to downtown Akron each day. Downtown is also METRO’s transit hub, with more than 2,000 bus-to-bus transfers occurring in downtown Akron each day. The center will host AMTRAK, the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad, proposed Cleveland-Akron-Canton Commuter Rail service, Greyhound bus service, METRO RTA, buses and taxis.

* Summit County Engineer’s Improved Accessibility to Cuyahoga Valley National Park: $400,000 — The Cuyahoga Valley National Park (CVNP) has become increasingly popular destinations for residents of northeast Ohio. CVNP is one of the top 20 most visited national parks in the country. Improving access to the CVNP will increase the safety of the roadways, improve a multi-modal usage and access, and decrease vehicular congestion in the park and adjacent areas.

LORAIN COUNTY

* New York Central Train Station in Elyria: $1,712,128 — Renovation of the historic New York Central Train Station in downtown Elyria. The project will provide a multi-purpose facility to serve the transit needs of Lorain County into the future and create an attractive space for public events. The site plan includes a ten bus “pulse” area for Lorain County Transit, where all northern and southern routes will converge regularly to exchange passengers. The station has 76 parking spaces and an area for a stand-alone rental car facility.

* Reconstruct Broadway Avenue in Lorain: $600,000 — A street scaping project where the road, sidewalk, crosswalks, lighting and electrical systems will be reconstructed to give the gateway to the waterfront of Lorain a new face. It will also provide improved access to the planned reintroduction of trolley service to the waterfront development areas. Residents of Lorain have been denied access to the Lorain waterfront on Lake Erie for many years. The harbor area now has approximately 100 acres of vacant land available for development.

* Purchase High Speed Ferries for Black River Excursion Boat Service, Lorain Port Authority: $600,000 — Included in as part of a comprehensive, intermodal transportation system for the Lorain area including: rail, transit and waterborne phases. The overall project is the result of several years of planning and currently includes the Lorain Port Authority’s new $6.95 million Black River Landing multi-modal Transportation Center, the Lake Shore Railroad’s progression northward to the Port of Lorain, and the creation of the Lorain Heritage Trolley non-profit corporation.

* Grade Crossing Safety Device Upgrades in Elyria and Northridge, Norfolk Southern Railroad: $761,600 — Upgrade circuits controlling gates and flashing lights at six grade crossings to “constant warning time devices.” This is a “smart” device that generates a standard time delay from activation of the gates and lights until the train enters the crossing, regardless of train speed. Eliminating the variation based on train speed will improve public safety by reducing the rate of crossing accidents and the rate of associated train derailments, particularly important on this rail line due to the co-mingling of freight trains and higher speed Amtrak trains.

CUYAHOGA COUNTY

* Pearl Road, City of Strongsville: $800,000 — Improve the roadway from two lanes to four or five lanes. As a north-south connector between Cleveland and Medina, US 42 is a vital component of the region’s transportation system. Pearl Road relieves congestion on Interstate 71 and serves as a conduit for developing areas to the south and west seeking access to I-71. It is prone to frequent flooding due to the lack of proper drainage, and traffic problems due to a lack of enough through lanes.

* State Route 82, City of North Royalton: $800,000 — Reconstruct and widen Royalton Road to provide a full service roadway of five lanes through several miles of business, commercial, and industrial districts. This is the largest road project ever for the City of North Royalton. Originally constructed in 1930, Royalton Road is the primary east-west corridor in southern Cuyahoga County with major interstate interchanges located in neighboring Strongsville (I-71) and Broadview Heights (I-77). Royalton Road also serves as a primary corridor between Cuyahoga County and three neighboring counties: Lorain, Portage, and Summit.