new_DPM_site_banner_revised
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
Politics & Government

Federal infrastructure dollars directed to Sussex County transportation projects

Federal, state and local officials break ground on an infrastructure project near Georgetown.
Katie Grasso
/
Office of US Senator Tom Carper
Federal, state and local officials, including US Senator Tom Carper, DelDOT Secretary Nicole Majeski and State Sen. Brian Pettyjohn, break ground on a project outside Georgetown.

Sen. Tom Carper and Delaware Transportation Secretary Nicole Majeski toured Sussex County infrastructure projects slated to receive federal dollars Tuesday.

Those projects include the relocation of a truck route in Georgetown to make safety improvements and allow for an expansion of a runway at the Delaware Coastal Airport.

Majeski says the Georgetown project is the result of years of discussions with local partners. She argues adding a roundabout to a key truck route project can resolve long-standing concerns about driver safety.

“What’s great about this project is that it’s not only a safety project," she said. "It will help with congestion management, it will help us improve freight movement, and it is going to spur economic development. It is covering a lot of bases for us.”

State Sen. Bryan Pettyjohn (R-Georgetown) says one of those projects – expansion of a Delaware Coastal Airport runway that includes moving and making safety improvements to a truck route in Georgetown – has been in the works for years.

“I remember this being talked about back in the early 90s," he said. "I grew up about a mile and a half over that way, and I remember dad coming home from a workshop about this happening.”

Pettyjohn adds the project could enable Aloft Aeroarchitects, a local firm that outfits the interiors of jets, to attract new customers and hire more employees. The federal government will pay for 80% of the $25.5 million project, with the rest coming from Delaware’s Transportation Trust Fund and local partners.

The first phase of construction in Georgetown is estimated to cost $25.5 million; federal dollars will cover 80 percent of the total.

Another project will add new bus bays, electric vehicle charging stations and a solar-powered microgrid at the Rehoboth Beach Park and Ride.

That will cost an estimated $12 million - with a federal grant covering $5.4 million of that price tag.