White House Hails Kansas City’s Stimulus-Backed ‘Green Impact Zone’

Cities have been rather shortchanged by the stimulus law’s road funding — though transit money has been more amply directed to large urban areas — but the Obama administration found a stimulus success story today in Kansas City.

kc_green_zone001_rc.jpgRep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO) shows off a map of his home district’s ‘Green Impact Zone.’ (Photo: Brookings)

The city’s "Green Impact Zone," a 150-block area where residents are receiving help with home weatherization and construction has begun on a new bus rapid transit line, today hosted three senior presidential advisers: Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan, White House urban affairs director Adolfo Carrion, and "green jobs" czar Van Jones.

The White House aides visited Kansas City to evaluate how its use of $200 million in stimulus aid to help revitalize the urban center could be replicated in other cities around the country.

In addition to energy-efficiency projects and the bus line, which would use biodiesel vehicles, the "Impact Zone" is aiming to provide job training in transit and park-building for the neighborhood’s population of ex-parolees.

"We’ll do this one neighborhood at a time," linking transportation, energy, and housing investments, Carrion told the local Fox TV station in an interview this morning.

The stop at Kansas City’s "Impact Zone," spearheaded by Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO), will be followed by Obama administration visits to Chicago, Flagstaff, Los Angeles, and other cities as part of a broader urban tour.


Today’s Headlines

European ash cloud prompting push for better rail systems (Reuters) Villaraigosa uses airport tarmac encounter to lobby Obama on federal funding for "30/10" transit plan (LAist) $48B in transport funding now available to states, about a month after Congress officially extended the 2005 transportation law until next year (DOT Press) Conservatives blast Oberstar’s new proposal […]

NYC’s Moynihan Station is the First Big TIGER Stimulus Winner

New York City’s Moynihan Station project has snagged $83 million in grant money from the stimulus law’s Transportation Investments Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) program, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) announced today. A rendering of the proposed Moynihan Station. (Photo: The Real Deal) The grant makes the intended successor to the current Penn Station, a longstanding priority […]

Freight Rail, Streetcars Are Tops in Stimulus’ TIGER Chase

The Obama administration today announced the winners of $1.5 billion stimulus in highly competitive stimulus grants under the program known as Transportation Investments Generating Economic Recovery, or TIGER. Southeastern and midwestern freight rail projects were the day’s biggest winners, with urban streetcar projects also making a big splash. Freight rail in Chicago, where the CREATE […]

Under Economic Impact Analysis, Highway Expansion Loses Appeal

Despite the common refrains about transportation spending creating jobs, most states don’t actually give serious thought to the economic impact of transportation projects. More often than not, they’re content to sink money into freeways despite a wealth of research that shows that transit, bikeways, and sidewalks deliver a much bigger economic bang for the taxpayer’s […]

Rounding Up More TIGER Coverage

The Streetsblog Network has been abuzz over the last 24 hours about the TIGER grants that were announced yesterday by the US DOT. Elana had some great roundups on this site yesterday about winners and losers in the highly competitive process. Yonah Freemark of The Transport Politic posted another good overview. He notes, as Elana […]