- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 26, 2022

The Biden administration announced Tuesday it will spend $1.75 billion to upgrade and improve accessibility at public rail stations across the country, including retrofitting stations with elevators to assist travelers with disabilities.

The funds will come from the bipartisan infrastructure law’s All Stations Accessibility Program. Roughly $343 million will be available to transit agencies this year, with the rest to be allocated over the next few years.

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg will unveil the program at an event Tuesday, the 32nd anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

More than 900 transit legacy station stations across the country were built before 1990, and are not fully accessible to people with disabilities.

“While our country has made enormous progress in the three decades since passing the Americans with Disabilities Act, too many people with disabilities still don’t have access to reliable public transportation,” Mr. Buttigieg said.

“This often means that affordable, public transportation by rail is not an option,” he said. “That is what we intend to change through ASAP.”

Transit agencies interested in the funds will have to apply through the Federal Transit Administration to receive grants and will have to match 20% of the project’s funds.

The announcement is the latest from the Biden administration to improve accessibility in transportation. Earlier this year, the administration allocated more than $1 billion to modernize airports across the country.

• Jeff Mordock can be reached at jmordock@washingtontimes.com.

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