More Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act funds are flowing, with the Federal Transit Administration's award of $343 million in grants to make rail transit systems in eight states more accessible.

The grants, announced on May 28, are the latest round in the All Stations Accessibility Program (ASAP), which created by the 2021 IIJA .

Big Winner: New York MTA

By far the largest grant award is $156.5 million to the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority to install new elevators, update platforms, repair stairways and make other improvements at five stations of the New York City subway system in the Bronx and upper Manhattan. 

The New Jersey Transit Corp. received the second-largest grant, $83.3 million, for upgrades at the century-old Brick Church station on the Morris and Essex Line. Work will include adding accessible platforms, elevators and renovating a pedestrian tunnel and stairways.

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority will get a $67.6-million award to help fund platforms at 14 stops on the Green Line’s light rail B and C branches. The  project includes installing accessible platforms.

Also on the list is the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority, which receives $16 million for improvements to eight stations, making the entire Blue Line accessible, according to FTA.

Other grants include $8 million to the Pittsburgh Regional Transit System, for work at 10 Red Line stations and $5.5 million to the New Orleans Regional Transit Authority, for upgrades to the St. Charles Streetcar route.

Rounding out the grantee list are $4.7 million to the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (Muni), for upgrades to eight stops on two Muni light rail lines; and $1.4 million to the Maryland Dept. of Transportation for engineering and design for improvements to the College Park station on the Maryland Area Regional Commuter Camden Line.

ASAP money was in great demand, as with other IIJA competitively awarded transportation grant  programs. FTA said it received about $1.1 billion in requests for the $343 million available.

Under the IIJA, federal funds can be no more than 80% of an ASAP project’s total cost.

In all, the infrastructure law provides $1.75 billion over five years for ASAP. In December 2022, FTA announced  $686 million for 15 ASAP projects.

FTA noted that a lack of accessibility is a major problem for riders on legacy rail transit systems with facilities that predate the 1990 enactment of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The agency said more than 900 legacy transit stations are not yet fully accessible.