clf budget calculator header

Available Budget Per Fiscal Year

2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
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Introduction

Governor Patrick and the Massachusetts Legislature have taken on the difficult task of trying to address the chronic underfunding of our transportation system. In April, both the House and the Senate passed transportation funding bills. The Senate bill, on average, dedicates about $100 million per year more in funding to transportation than the House bill, but about $260 million per year less than the Governor's proposal.

As the conference committee is meeting to merge these bills, there has been a lot of interest in understanding how much funding will be available to tackle our transportation challenges. This budget calculator allows you to find out what combination of capital projects and operations needs could be funded if a bill goes into law that has the same level of funding as the Senate bill. While the bill raises significant new funds for transportation, the majority of dollars will be used to fill budget gaps, leaving limited funds available for capital purchases and projects or to improve the transit service hours and frequency. There are also some questions about whether the assumptions underlying the Senate Bill are accurate, and you can use the calculator to change some of them.

Instructions Details

Select from the following capital projects, additional operations funding, and revenue assumptions you would like to see included and see how much you have left in your budget in each fiscal year.

Instructions
  • Select the road, highway, bike/ped, and transit projects you would like to see funded. (A description of each project or choice will pop up if you move your mouse over the word "details," which appears next to each item.)
  • Select any additional funding you would like to make available for the fifteen regional transit authorities (RTAs) around the state and/or for the MBTA to expand service.
  • Choose which revenue assumptions you would like to make.
  • See how much money you have left in your budget in each fiscal year. (If you are over budget for a particular year, the dollar amount will appear in red, but you may continue to add projects so you can see how much additional funding you would need.)
Assumptions Details
Assumptions

The calculator is based on the following assumptions:

  • You have access to the following funding:

    • Revenues from the Senate bill (S.1770) that aren't allocated to fill operations gaps and other needs.
    • Existing funding already set aside in the existing Commonwealth Capital Plan for capital investments.
    • All dollars freed up by phasing out the funding of MassDOT's daily operations with bonds between FY14 and FY16.
  • The Green Line Extension and South Coast Rail (to a lesser extent) are already partially funded in the Commonwealth Capital Plan. The debt service you are required to pay for out of the unallocated funds has therefore been reduced for these projects accordingly.

Limitations of Calculator Details
Limitations

All of the underlying numbers for this calculator were taken from spreadsheets provided by the Senate Ways and Means Committee and the MassDOT pro forma. The following information was unavailable for this calculator:

  • There are no official revenue projections from the Senate bill for fiscal years FY19 and FY20, although the unallocated amounts in the Commonwealth Capital Plan are available for these years. We nevertheless included FY19 and FY20 in the calculator, so that you can see how much money would have to be raised from existing and new revenue to fund the projects you have selected. The total debt service cost for those years appears in blue rather than red to distinguish it.
  • There are many other critical transportation projects, such as the Red Line/Blue Line Connector, the Urban Ring, and Silver Line Phase III, which have not been included in the calculator because sufficient cost information by fiscal year is unavailable.
  • The calculator does not include the cost of any additional employees at MassDOT which may be needed to complete the capital projects you have selected.

Capital Projects - Debt Service Expenses

Clear Selection
Continued Accelerated Bridge Program Details
Continued Accelerated Bridge Program

Since its implementation in 2008, the Accelerated Bridge Program has restored 121 structurally deficient bridges across the state and expects to restore an additional 200 by 2016. Under the Senate bill, there is no specific funding set aside to continue the program when it ends in 2016. If this project is funded, one-third of the new funding would be used to complete several large projects of regional significance; the remainder would be used to accelerate repairs to local bridges, thereby reducing congestion and improving public safety.

Multimodal Highway ProgramDetails
Multimodal Highway Program

Would fund a statewide portfolio of hundreds of local and regional projects designed to improve safety, reduce congestion, reduce the number of 'high-crash' locations in the Commonwealth, and reconstruct roads. This includes funding to the transportation assets managed by the Department of Conservation & Recreation.

I-91 Viaduct in SpringfieldDetails
I-91 Viaduct in Springfield

This would provide funding to overhaul the 2.5-mile long overpass of I-91 in downtown Springfield that is currently deteriorating. Built in 1968, the overpass averages 66,000 vehicles daily and its surface is rough from years of patching jobs while the bottom of the overpass shows heavy rusting and signs of cracking.

I-93/I-95 Interchange in CantonDetails
I-93/I-95 Interchange in Canton

This project would reduce traffic congestion and improve mobility and safety by eliminating two interchange weaves that allow access to University Avenue and Blue Hill Drive. High-speed directional ramps would be constructed to allow access. This project would also reduce truck rollovers that occur in the existing I-95 loop ramp configuration.

I-93/I-95 Interchange in Woburn/ReadingDetails
I-93/I-95 Interchange in Woburn/Reading

This is the busiest interchange in Massachusetts. The project would improve traffic flow and safety principally by replacing or reconfiguring some of the ramps to eliminate all interchange weaves. The project would also add a single travel lane northbound on I-95 between the I-93/I-95 Interchange and Route 129 in Wakefield and extend the proposed new exit ramp.

Bike & Ped FacilitiesDetails
Bike & Ped Facilities

Dedicated funding to construct new and improve existing bicycle and pedestrian facilities owned or managed by both MassDOT and the Department of Conservation & Recreation across the state. This funding would improve the safety of pedestrians and bicyclists and provide better travel options.

Highway Preservation Facilities & SystemsDetails
Highway Preservation Facilities & Systems

Targeted funding for a municipal small bottlenecks program; safety and operational improvements at depots; deployment of roadside traffic and travel information; equipment procurements and completion of an integrated asset management system.

Chapter 90 (Additional $100M)Details
Chapter 90 (Additional $100M)

An additional $100 million per year to increase the annual allotment from $200 million to $300 million per year to municipalities for local road maintenance. In FY2014, a portion of the additional $100 million would be used for a statewide municipal road asset management system. In subsequent years, the funding would be added to the allotment.

Vehicles for Regional Transit AuthoritiesDetails
Vehicles for Regional Transit Authorities

Would fund a 10-year program to replace buses that have exceeded their useful life, purchase new buses for expanded services, and support replacement of other equipment and facilities upgrade. Across the Commonwealth, there will be newer buses, fewer delays, and improved reliability.

Red & Orange Line CarsDetails
Red & Orange Line Cars

Would fund the procurement of subway vehicles to replace the 43-year old Red Line vehicles and 31-year old Orange Line vehicles, as well as improvements to tracks, signals, and systems. At the end of this project, the Red and Orange Lines would have twenty-first century vehicles, fewer delays, and improved reliability. This assumes that the program is 100% state funded to allow the fabrication and assembly of the cars in the Commonwealth in order to create jobs.

Green Line CarsDetails
Green Line Cars

Would fund the procurement of Green Line cars, as well as limited improvements to tracks, signals, and systems. This would reduce wait times and train breakdowns, and allow for more three-car trains during rush hour, which would enable increased passenger capacity with minimal additional operating costs for the MBTA. The program would be 100% state funded to allow the fabrication and assembly of the cars in the Commonwealth, which would also create jobs.

MBTA BusesDetails
MBTA Buses

Would accelerate a 10-year program to replace buses that have exceeded their useful life and for which it is no longer economically feasible to continue rehabilitation. Capacity would increase and fewer breakdowns would occur.

Red Line #3 OverhaulDetails
Red Line #3 Overhaul

Would overhaul the newest Red Line cars that date back to 1994 for a longer useful life and fewer breakdowns.

MBTA Power, Facilities, and OperationsDetails
MBTA Power, Facilities, and Operations

Would fund critical upgrades to decades-old electrical service, fuel systems, water pumps, track, tunnel, and other infrastructure that is essential for the timely operation of trains and buses. Failures can and do happen frequently with the current system resulting in service delays, and reliability and safety issues. Improved power systems are also necessary to run more frequent subway service, more frequent use of 3-car trains on the Green Line, and reach full-speeds on the Red Line.

Modernization Pilot ProjectsDetails
Modernization Pilot Projects

Would fund the development and piloting of innovative programs at the MBTA, including the implementation of a new Bus Rapid Transit system and the use of Diesel Multiple Unit vehicles. These innovations would allow the MBTA to experiment with new vehicle technologies and new methods of service provision in order to provide better, faster, cleaner, and more efficient public transit.

Aeronautics ProgramDetails
Aeronautics Program

In 2010, the Massachusetts Statewide Airport System Plan identified a need of approximately $54 million annually to ensure the short- and long-term development of a safe and efficient airport system. This investment of $125 million is critical to address funding needs at general aviation airports. These investments would help to support jobs in the aviation industry.

RMV CapitalDetails
RMV Capital

Investment to consolidate regional ‘super centers' and to develop self-service kiosks at retail and municipal centers for customer convenience.

South Coast RailDetails
South Coast Rail

This level of funding would ensure that the South Coast Rail line, which would use diesel-powered commuter trains to connect Boston to Fall River and New Bedford—the fourth and fifth largest cities in the Commonwealth—can be completed in the next eight years. This will result in greater overall mobility for South Coast residents, less congestion on Route 24, and more transportation options in a key region of the Commonwealth. Commuter rail service to the South Coast is projected to create 3,800 new jobs and generate nearly $500 million in new economic activity statewide every year.

Green Line Extension with Federal Funding Details
Green Line Extension with Federal Funding

The Green Line Extension (GLX) project would extend existing MBTA Green Line service from a relocated Lechmere Station in East Cambridge to Union Square in Somerville and to Medford. This project would greatly improve public transit service in some of the most densely-populated municipalities of the Commonwealth and is legally required. This option assumes that the Federal Transit Administration will fund almost half of the total project cost. You can only choose this option or GLX without Federal Funding below.

Green Line Extension without Federal FundingDetails
Green Line Extension without Federal Funding

The Green Line Extension (GLX) project would extend existing MBTA Green Line service from a relocated Lechmere Station in East Cambridge to Union Square in Somerville and to Medford. This project would greatly improve public transit service in some of the most densely-populated municipalities of the Commonwealth and is legally required. This option assumes that the Federal Transit Administration will not fund any portion of the total project cost, which would increase the required state contribution. You can only choose this option or GLX with Federal Funding above.

South Station ExpansionDetails
South Station Expansion

This level of funding would provide support for the estimated cost to complete design and construction, within the next 10 years, of an expanded South Station that will accommodate future passenger rail growth for the existing commuter rail system, South Coast Rail, and Amtrak services along the Northeast Corridor, the Inland Route through Worcester and Springfield, and future high-speed rail service to Montreal.

Inland RouteDetails
Inland Route

This level of funding would support the expansion of passenger rail by directly connecting Boston with Springfield, via what is commonly known as the Inland Route. Funding will cover major rehabilitation along the route, including creating a continuous second track, widening bridges, updating interlockings, upgrading the signal system, purchasing passenger train equipment, and constructing or rehabilitating stations. This would also support a future high-speed rail connection to New York City via Springfield.

Berkshires to NYCDetails
Berkshires to NYC

This project would allow for the rehabilitation of track, signals, and structures between Pittsfield and the Massachusetts/Connecticut state line in order to support future rail service between Pittsfield and New York City. The current line is served by freight carriers and is not up to the standards necessary for a passenger rail connection.

Rail to Cape CodDetails
Rail to Cape Cod

This level of funding would support permanent, seasonal service on weekends between Boston and Hyannis by upgrading rail, grade crossings, interlockings, bridges, drainage, and station accessibility. The five-year capital program would allow passenger service to continue uninterrupted during the summer months to connect this key tourist destination with Boston. Future expansion to year-round or weekday service would require additional upgrades (specifically in signal systems) to support additional train movements.

Additional Operations Funding For Transit

Clear Selection
Additional $25M operations funding for 15 RTAsDetails
Additional $25M operations funding for 15 RTAs

The Senate bill assumes an additional $12.5 million/year to be divided among the 15 RTAs. In comparison, Governor Patrick's plan dedicates an additional $100 million/year to the RTAs. Additional operations funding would help the RTAs provide needed service, including restoring previously cut service, increasing frequency on existing routes, or extending service in the evenings and on the weekends.

Additional $25M operations funding for MBTADetails
Additional $25M operations funding for MBTA

Additional operations funding would enable the MBTA to provide Night Owl service and/or reduce the pressure on fare increases and service cuts.

Revenue Assumptions

Clear Selection
Remove additional MBTA Own Source RevenueDetails
Remove additional MBTA Own Source Revenue

The legislation requires both MassDOT and the MBTA to reach new revenue targets using the tools these agencies have, including raising fares, RMV fees, and tolls and achieving efficiences and savings. The Senate bill sets a larger own source revenue target for the MBTA (from FY14-FY18 a total of $329M) compared to Governor Patrick's plan (FY14-FY18 a total of $168M). Though the bill does not detail how this money would be raised, in addition to raising dollars through selling station naming rights and other reforms, the agency will likely have to turn to greater fare increases and/or service cuts to meet its target. This option would eliminate the need for the MBTA to do so.

Difference in Growth Estimates Annualized (3.6% vs. 4%)Details
Difference in Growth Estimates Annualized (3.6% vs. 4%)

The Senate plan uses a 3.6% growth projection for MassDOT's expenses related to payroll and employee benefits. By comparison, MBTA's actual growth in payroll and benefits expenses from FY01 to FY11 was 5% on average each year. This option applies a 4% growth projection, consistent with MassDOT's pro forma.

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