Recently, WisDOT released the list of awardees from the latest round of Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP) funding in Wisconsin. Please read on to learn more about the projects that received funding!
As an organization that represents cycling, pedestrian, and trail advocates from around the state, it is important for us to continue to push for positive change on behalf of the Wisconsin bike and trail communities. Once the second most bicycle-friendly state in the country, according to the League of American Bicyclists, Wisconsin has dropped to #29 in recent years. The biggest reason for this drop: compared to other states, a relative lack of funding for non-motorized transportation alternatives. Wisconsin ranks second-to-last in the country for funding in this category. Meanwhile, despite this funding gap, the cycling industry brings in around $2.5 billion to Wisconsin’s economy each year, underscoring the importance of walking, biking and trail infrastructure to our state’s prosperity.
This year, the Wisconsin Bike Fed has been championing cycling and pedestrian improvements that improve safety and connectivity across the state. One of our highest priorities was to advocate for an increase in Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP) funding and to ensure that it was equitably awarded to cycling, pedestrian, and trail projects in both urban and rural communities. The Bike Fed worked with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation to advance Safe Routes to School (SRTS), as well as other cycling and pedestrian infrastructure projects, in communities with less than 5,000 residents through a new program called STARS – Safe Transportation Alternatives for Rural Schools.
We are pleased to report that we recently received a report from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation showcasing the list of newly funded projects under the TAP/STARS program. Please follow the link below to view the full list of projects on WisDOT’s TAP webpage:
We would like to thank our network of statewide advocates, Trek Bicycles, WisDOT, and Governor Evers for helping make this year’s TAP/STARS cycle so successful. The Bike Fed would also like to highlight a few of our own “Priority Projects” that were funded. Please follow the links below to learn more about each project on our website:
- The Egg Harbor Trails Project – $108,376
- The Wisconsin River Trail (Boscobel) – $2,069,460
- The Mound View Park Connector (Platteville) – $406,816
- The East Troy Multi-Use Trail Extension – $1,189,468
Even with an increase in TAP/STARS funding, more money is needed across the state to advance long-awaited projects. In past funding cycles the TAP program has been oversubscribed for communities of every size – except for those with a population of under 5,000. With technical assistance from Wisconsin Bike Fed, WisDOT received over $50 million in projects from rural communities but had only $10 million available to award. This underscores that there is a need for even more funding in TAP, that communities of all sizes want improved facilities for active transportation, and that with additional technical support to complete the application process funds can be more equitably distributed across the state.
While we celebrate this very successful round of awards, we know that our work is not done. We will continue to work with WisDOT, state and local governments, and our community partners to advocate for more funding for nonmotorized transportation projects across Wisconsin.