June 2, 2015
The Honorable Secretary Anthony Foxx
United States Department of Transportation
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, D.C. 20590
RE: TRANSPORTATION IMPROVEMENTS GENERATING ECONOMIC RECOVERY
Dear Secretary Foxx:
This letter is to convey Inland Action’s support for the Transportation Improvement Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant application submitted by San Bernardino Associated Governments (SANBAG) for the Redlands Passenger Rail Project. Inland Action is a non-profit organization of business and community leaders dedicated to the economic and community betterment of the Southern California region. This project will provide new passenger rail service through the communities of Redlands, Loma Linda, and San Bernardino and promote Ladders of Opportunity along the project alignment and throughout the region by connecting San Bernardino County residents with access to educational opportunities at University of Redlands, Loma Linda University, and California State University San Bernardino; job centers; healthcare facilities; and Veteran’s Affairs resource facilities.
SANBAG, the County Transportation Commission, is funded by a voter approved half-cent sales tax (Measure I). The Redlands Passenger Rail Project is an identified project within Measure I and will address the transportation needs of the Redlands Corridor as outlined in SANBAG’s Measure I Strategic Plan and the 2012 Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) Regional Transportation Plan.
The project will address existing and future traffic congestion by providing a cost-effective alternative travel option for communities along the Redlands Corridor in a way that maintains freight service and improves transit mobility, travel times, and corridor safety while minimizing adverse environmental effects.
The project will also provide new mobility options for large employment centers, medical centers, veteran services and colleges. Between 2015 and 2060, the population in San Bernardino County is expected to increase by 62 percent, growing from 2.1 million to 3.4 million. Transit options like the Redlands Passenger Rail Project will give residents and commuters additional travel options. The project will also assist SCAG and SANBAG in meeting statewide air pollution and greenhouse gas emission reduction targets.
Inland Action fully supports SANBAG as it seeks TIGER resources for the new passenger rail project. This project will support regional connectivity by offering transportation choices. We appreciate your careful review of the SANBAG application. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.