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Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg visits Birmingham

U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg to announce visited Birmingham last week to announce a $14.5 million federal grant to revitalize 4th Avenue North – once nicknamed 'Black Main during the segregation era.

The $14.5 million federal grant will be used to restore two-way traffic on the Avenue that used to be home to a myriad of Black owned businesses.

Secretary Buttigieg was welcomed by Congresswoman Terri Sewell, Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin, and other community leaders to celebrate how this project in theory will help better connect the city and create new opportunities for growth throughout Birmingham.

"We're here because everybody recognizes all the ways in which infrastructure shapes our lives, and we feel it when something goes wrong," Sec. Buttigieg said. "Sometimes we don't pay attention to it when everything goes right, but a lot of work goes into making sure that it goes right. And that's what today is about."

"We were absolutely thrilled to welcome Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg back to the Magic City to celebrate a $14.5 MILLION investment by the Biden-Harris Administration into Birmingham's Black Main Street!" said Rep. Sewell.

This award will help reconnect the 4th Avenue Business District and pave the way for strong, equitable growth!

"Birmingham's 4th Avenue Business District has a rich history of African American ingenuity and entrepreneurship," said Rep. Sewell. "With the help of Secretary Buttigieg and the Biden-Harris Administration, we're working to ensure its residents, workers and businesses have the infrastructure they need to thrive!"

The grant comes from the U.S. Department of Transportation's Neighborhood Access and Equity Grant Program.

"So grateful to U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg for joining us in Birmingham's Black Business District yesterday for the announcement of a $14.5 million grant," said Mayor Woodfin. "The funds will transform 4th Avenue West in a two-way street, improving safety and stimulating economic development."

Buttigieg also visited Lawson State Community College while he was in Jefferson County. There he met with Lawston State President Dr. Cynthia Anthony, faculty, and students accompanied by Sewell.

"Thanks for hosting me here at Lawson State and thanks Congresswoman for encouraging me to visit. I see why you did. There is a lot to be proud of here," Sec. Buttigieg said. "It's so important right now because under President Biden's leadership we are entering an unprecedented period of building new infrastructure, creating new kinds of manufacturing jobs. The kind of training I saw here today preparing young people's skills in robotics, advanced manufacturing, and commercial driving. We need those skills. We need to build them up like never before. We are building livelihoods here and I am glad that I got to see this for myself."

"I have always said that Lawson State is one of the crown Jewells of Alabama's Seventh District," said Sewell. "I am proud to say that Dr. Anthony and Secretary Buttigieg are leading the way in making sure that our communities not only survive but thrive."

Buttigieg was previously the Mayor of South Bend, Indiana before being nominated by President Joseph R. Biden to be the Secretary of Transportation,

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