The Bexar County Commissioners Court approved plans for a money swap between the county and the state Tuesday, a plan that supporters say will add lanes to U.S. Highway 281 and Loop 1604 and develop streetcar lanes downtown.
The Commissioners Court approved Amendment No. 4 to an agreement between Bexar County and the Advanced Transportation District, which continues the transfer of certain proceeds that the ATD receives from the Sales and Use Tax to the County.
"What the fourth amendment does is recognizes an additional $92 million dollar grant from TxDot (Texas Department of Transportation) for VIA's multi-modal strategy," said David Smith, Bexar County Manager.
VIA's multi-modal strategy includes several new forms of transportation for downtown, including their new VIA Primo Bus Program and the future Downtown Streetcar.
"It also recognizes that the county will then issue $92 million dollars to be supported by the ATD, which will then address Loop 1604 and Highway 281," said Smith.
The controversial plan allows for the county to use money that was originally set aside for the street car program to instead be used on a multi-million dollar expansion to Highway 281 and Loop 1604, while the downtown street car will now be funded by state money...a move backers hope will eventually help draw more federal dollars to the plan.
By: Bill O'Neil and Marissa A. Wagner
Tuesday, December 4, 2012