TriMet awards final round of federal JARC grants totaling $1 million

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Grants awarded to tri-county non-profits; funds will continue to provide improved access to jobs in the region

TriMet recently awarded the final installment of Job Access and Reverse Commute (JARC) grants totaling $1 million to four non-profit programs in Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington counties. These programs help connect low-income residents to jobs and job-related services.

The grants are the last federal transportation funds available for the region under the 2005 federal transportation reauthorization bill, and recipients may use their grant award over the course of three years (fiscal years 2015-2017).

TriMet acts as a pass through for the federal funds, awarding and distributing the funds to the community. TriMet also matches the federal fund amount with in-kind transit services.

“We are proud to be a partner in this grant process that provides access to transit, to jobs and to opportunity,” said TriMet General Manager Neil McFarlane. “These grants have and continue to significantly reduce the cost of commuting for families and individuals throughout our region.”

The following projects were selected through a competitive process, with participation by the Jobs Access Advisory Committee in the selection.

  • Tualatin Chamber of Commerce’s Tualatin Shuttle – $295,026
    Tualatin – Transit Commute Service
    The Tualatin Chamber of Commerce has successfully operated the Tualatin Shuttle since 1997. TriMet provides north-south transit service near the town center, however Tualatin severely lacks east-west service to the Northwest quadrant of town identified by TriMet as a “Target Employment Area for JARC Funded Projects.” This area of Tualatin has the greatest concentration of jobs not directly served by TriMet. It attracts significant traffic due to the concentration of jobs, location between I-5 and Highway 99W, and lack of TriMet service.In an effort to provide service to the jobs in this area, the JARC grant will be used to continue vital shuttle service during weekday peak hours that is free to riders.
  • Swan Island Business Association’s Swan Island Evening Shuttle – $307,487
    Portland -Transit Commute Service
    The Swan Island Evening Shuttle provides a last-mile shuttle service between the Rose Quarter Transit Center and the Swan Island employment area via Basin Avenue weekday evenings between 6:30 p.m. and midnight.The Swan Island Evening Shuttle, which serves shift times when TriMet service is not offered, connects to all four MAX lines, Portland Streetcar and six TriMet bus lines on Swan Island at Anchor Street (Line 72), at the Albina/Mississippi MAX station (Yellow Line & Line 35) and at the Rose Quarter Transit Center (Red, Blue & Green lines; bus lines 4, 8, 35, 44, and 77; and C-Tran 157).
  • Clackamas Community College’s (CCC) Green Line Shuttle – $90,000
    Clackamas County – Transit Commute Service
    The CCC Green Line Shuttle runs express service between the college’s main campus in Oregon City and the MAX Green Line terminus at Clackamas Town Center. It is full during rush hours. Seventy-two percent of incoming CCC students receive financial aid. Slightly more than half of these students live below the federal poverty level and 42 percent work more than 20 hours a week. The shuttle service provides a direct trip that is not available on TriMet and connects the under-served area around Clackamas Community College to the MAX service.                                            
  • Ride Connection’s Forest Grove, Cornelius and Tigard Connector Service$307,487
    Forest Grove – Transit Commute Service
    Ride Connection’s Connector Service provides transportation service to low-income areas that do not have transit service, helping individuals traveling for employment, job training or employment-related activities. Riders are able to connect to and utilize the TriMet system and create local community connections. Last-mile connector service will be made available in urbanized areas in Forest Grove, Cornelius and Tigard.

Background
The JARC program was established to address the unique transportation challenges facing low-income residents seeking to obtain and maintain employment. It leverages transportation and social service resources to improve access to jobs and job-related activities.

The JARC grants fund existing transit commute services derived from the Portland Regional (Urbanized) Employment Transportation Services Plan. These programs improve access to areas with entry-level employment opportunities, many of which are located in suburban areas not well-served by transit. Many entry level-jobs also require working late at night or on weekends when conventional transit services are either reduced or non-existent.

Service contracts with these four organizations will begin July 1, 2015 and end June 30, 2017. These awards are the final remaining federal transportation funds available for the Portland Regional (Urbanized) area under the 2005 SAFETEA-LU Federal transportation reauthorization bill and make up the final round of disbursement.

 TriMet/Grant recipients comply with Title VI of Civil Right Act of 1964
TriMet is committed to complying with the requirements of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The agency prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, age or disability in all of its federally funded programs and activities.