Troy, MI – Today U.S. Congressman Gary Peters joined with business and community leaders to break ground on the new Troy Transit Center. Todayâ€™s advancement marks the most important step in what was a four year effort to build this important hub connecting the Pontiac-Detroit-Chicago high speed rail corridor with Amtrak rail, the SMART bus service and the proposed Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system thatâ€™s moving ahead. In the future, the Troy Transit Center will play a critical role in our regional transit plan.
In 2009, Peters secured $1.3 million in federal funding for this project. In that same year, Peters also successfully urged Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood to approve a $8.4 million TIGER grant to help fund the center. Despite resistance from former Mayor Janice Daniels, todayâ€™s ground breaking sends a clear message to investors and entrepreneurs that Troy is open for business.
â€œAfter years of working with business and community leaders to make this happen, Iâ€™m deeply honored to finally break ground on our Troy Transit Center,â€ said U.S. Congressman Gary Peters. â€œI want to thank everyone who worked to take this vital job-creating step because we never would have made it here without standing united. This important investment in our future will help attract new economic development funding to create more good paying jobs across our region and make our community a better place to live, work and raise a family.â€
Peters has made regional transit a top priority for one simple reason: thereâ€™s almost nothing more effective in spurring new economic development and job creation. Take for example Clevelandâ€™s Euclid Corridor BRT system. For just a $200 million investment, Cleveland has generated $5.8 billion in rehabilitation and new construction in over 110 projects, creating thousands of jobs. To keep our regional economy growing, we need to continue making investments to strengthen all of our communities such as this.
â€¢ The Troy Transit Center is a $6.2 million project financed entirely with federal funds.
â€¢ In August 2009, Congressman Peters wrote a letter to Transportation Secretary LaHood urging his support for a TIGER grant to help fund this project. In September 2009, USDOT responded by awarding a $8.4 million grant.
â€¢ In December 2009, Congressman Peters successfully included $1.3 million in federal funding for this project in the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development appropriations bill.
â€¢ When former Troy Mayor Janice Daniels and her allies on Troy City Council were considering rejecting this funding, Peters joined with more than 100 stakeholders from the business and government community to urge City Council not to reject these job creating funds.
â€¢ The 28,000 square foot project sits on a 3-acre site, replacing the old Amtrak station. This includes a 2,000-square-foot building with a waiting area and public restrooms, a pedestrian bridge over the tracks to the Amtrak platform and extra parking.
For his work on this issue, Peters has earned praise from several important stakeholders.
â€œThis was an effort led by Congressman Gary Peters. He submitted the request and basically convinced House leaders that our project deserves this significant investment – in these tough budget times no less.â€ – Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber President Carrie Zarotney (Observer & Eccentric, 7/21/09)
â€œWeâ€™re glad the federal government has recognized the importance of this project, not just for Birmingham and Troy, but the entire region. We are thankful to Congressman Peters for championing this project.â€ – Jana Ecker, City of Birmingham Planning Director (Oakland Press, 12/10/09).
â€œThe City of Birmingham would like to thank Congressman Peters for his strong support and hard work to secure the initial $1.3 million in the House version of the FY 2010 Transportation bill, as well as Senator Levin and Senator Stabenow for supporting the Transit Center in the conference on the bill,â€ – Birmingham Mayor Rackeline Hoff (Observer & Eccentric, 12/13/09).
â€œThis has been a collaboration between cities, to respond to a need for transportation in the region. This shows by working together we work better for our citizens than if we work separately.â€ – Troy Mayor Louise Schilling (Detroit News, 12/14/12).