U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said overwhelming requests for so-called TIGER grants reflect the need for increased infrastructure funding.
"It's clear that communities across America can't afford to wait any longer to get started," LaHood said. "At a time when gas prices are high, it's more important than ever that we invest in projects that will relieve congestion, improve the safety of our transportation systems, and provide Americans with affordable, efficient options for reaching their destinations."
He said application for the TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) grants totaled $10.2 billion, far exceeding the $500 million set aside for the program. DOT received 703 applications from all 50 states, U.S. territories and the District of Columbia.
Like the first three rounds, TIGER 2012 grants are for capital investments in surface transportation infrastructure and will be awarded on a competitive basis. This is the fourth round of TIGER funding. The previous three rounds of the TIGER program provided $2.6 billion to 172 projects.