WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) today announced a $7.0 million federal transportation grant for Mississippi State University to develop an approximately two-mile multimodal corridor on Hightower Road.
The 2017 Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant was approved by the U.S. Department of Transportation.
“Mississippi State proposed this multimodal project to help alleviate gridlock and improve safety for students, faculty, visitors, and Starkville residents,” Cochran said. “I’m pleased that the Department of Transportation will invest in this project, which will improve the overall quality of life for the Starkville and Oktibbeha County community.”
Cochran, chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, recommended the project last October in a letter to Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao.
The discretionary grant will allow Mississippi State to develop Hightower Road Corridor Project, a north-south passage that incorporates sidewalks, bike lanes, transit shelters, traffic signal improvements, and street lighting on the eastern perimeter of the university campus. The enhancements would be ADA compliant.
Congress annually appropriates funding for TIGER grants, which are awarded on a competitive and matching fund basis, and are directed toward projects that are expected to have a significant economic impact. Since 2009, Mississippi has received nearly $100 million in TIGER funds.
Congressional appropriators are now in negotiations to set TIGER funding for FY2018. The Senate Appropriations Committee in July 2017 approved a bill recommending $550 million for TIGER grants in FY2018, $50 million more than the FY2017 funding level.