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The City of Madison’s $80 million request for federal support for its Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system was included in President Joe Biden’s budget, which was unveiled today on Capitol Hill.

“This is great news for Madison! It means we are on track to deliver a fast, efficient and comfortable rapid transit system to our residents – one that will help people get to work, school, shopping and recreation easily and quickly,” said Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway. “I want to thank President Biden, Senator Tammy Baldwin, Representative Mark Pocan and Secretary Pete Buttigieg for their steadfast support of this project and for the partnership provided by Secretary Craig Thompson of the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.”

“I am a strong supporter of this investment from the Federal Transit Administration in Madison’s public transportation system,” said U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin. “This federal funding will support the East-West BRT project that will provide services to the community and better connect folks with major employment, education, and recreation destinations. Together, we are helping people get around, and get ahead.”

The City requested $80 million in federal funds, half of the $160 million projected cost of the East-West BRT Line, from the Capital Investment Grants Small Starts program at the Federal Transit Administration. The rest of the money will come from a combination of federal grants already received, and local dollars.

The next steps for the City are to complete design and environmental work with the anticipation that the grant will be executed in the summer of 2022 and construction will start by the end of 2022.

The City of Madison is growing rapidly, and it is anticipated that 85,000 new jobs, 100,000 new residents, and nearly 800,000 new road trips to work, school, and recreation within city limits will happen by 2050. A BRT system is needed to ensure that Madison’s streets are not gridlocked with traffic impacting our local economy and the health and well-being of residents.

Auto emissions are one of Madison’s biggest sources air pollution, and the new BRT system will contribute significantly to reducing emissions. One sixty-foot electric BRT bus could remove as many as 80 cars off of Madison’s congested roads, making our air cleaner and our streets safer.

The proposed East-West BRT Corridor will run along East Washington Avenue, around the State Capitol building, through the University of Wisconsin-Madison, continue west on University Avenue and Mineral Point Road, and go to the West Towne Mall.


  • Reuben Sanon, (608) 266-4611
City Hall