The Regional Transportation Council discussed and approved the funding for the project at a meeting Feb. 27.
Half of the $30 million will be a grant to the city, and the other half will be a loan. The city of Plano is contributing an additional $25 million to the garage.
This funding will become available April 8 barring any major concerns from the public, which would require a revisitation of the plan, said Michael Morris, the director of transportation with the council, at a March 9 public meeting.
“I think you should assume with the public meeting and with the RTC, we’re moving ahead with our $30 million for that project,” Morris said.
The funding comes from a new mega-redevelopment program, Morris said, which he is shaping with the Collin Creek Mall project.
Previously only new developments were eligible for these types of funds, but with this program, more redevelopment projects may be able to receive funding, according to Morris.
For this project, the garage will be considered a regional park and ride lot for the federal funding to apply, he said.
“They [Plano] needed money to help build the development. We had to create a context of, ‘Why are we involved in it?’” Morris said. “So we created the transit component, we created the broader public policy item.”
The partnership includes requirements for park and ride spaces in the garage, as well as the inclusion of electric vehicle charging infrastructure in the development.
The city will also be required to coordinate with Dallas Area Rapid Transit for a transit service using next-generation electric vehicles to the Downtown Plano Light Rail Station. Plano may have the ability to pay for this portion of the project through funding from the Federal Transit Administration or other government organizations, the presentation detailed.
The garage must also be owned by the public sector and the funding can only be used for construction, according to Morris’ presentation.
“It serves like eight purposes for us all in one project,” Morris said. “You could live here [Collin Creek Mall redevelopment], park here, go to dining in downtown Plano. ... Lots of what we call market segments [are] well-integrated into this project.”