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February 17, 2010

Governor Quinn Announces $100 Million in Recovery Funds for Rail Projects in Illinois
$100 Million for CREATE Program; Investment to Create 1,087 Jobs

CHICAGO - February 17, 2010. Governor Pat Quinn announced today that the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) along with the Chicago Region Environmental and Transportation Efficiency (CREATE) Program partners has received a $100 million TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) grant under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). This federal investment is expected to create 1,087 jobs.

“Illinois has received the most TIGER funding in the Midwest. This investment will create 1,087 jobs and bring economic growth to our communities,” said Governor Quinn. “With this grant and dedicated partnerships like CREATE, Illinois continues to work to ensure our rail industry is moving forward and our state remains one of the nation’s major rail hubs.”

Across the nation, 1,400 applications were submitted for TIGER Grant funding and 50 projects were awarded. Here in Illinois, three applications were awarded totaling $128 million. The funds include $100 million for CREATE, $6 million for Tri-City Port District in Granite City and $22 million for the Normal Multi-modal transportation facility.

“Throughout the country, we have huge bottlenecks that restrict the flow of freight and passengers at a cost to the United States of an estimated $200 billion a year," said U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL). "The TIGER grant program is a coordinated, comprehensive effort to identify and fund nationally significant transportation projects that will improve safety, spur economic development, reduce congestion and create thousands of good paying jobs across the country. I thank Secretary LaHood and Governor Quinn for their leadership on this issue and commend local leaders throughout Illinois for their efforts."

“These federal funds will have a tremendous impact on Illinois’ economy by creating more jobs,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Gary Hannig. “This is another major step in the right direction to improve livability, sustainability and safety across the state.”

The grant funding will be targeted to six projects benefiting 13 Illinois communities. The projects will range in scope from rail line and viaduct improvements to a highway-rail grade separation. The completion of these projects by 2012 will support an estimated 1,087 jobs.

CREATE is a first-of-its-kind partnership, bringing together IDOT, the Chicago Department of Transportation and the Association of American Railroads (AAR). It is comprised of 71 critically needed rail and highway infrastructure improvements in Northeastern Illinois, aimed at improving the quality of life of Illinois residents, and increasing the efficiency of freight and passenger rail service throughout the region.

For more information, log onto www.recovery.illinois.gov or www.createprogram.org.

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