President Barack Obama is recommending $200 million in federal funding for a planned light-rail line linking St. Paul and Minneapolis.
Project supporters say the inclusion of Central Corridor in the president's budget is yet another sign of confidence from Washington. A final contract committing the federal government to pay for half of the nearly $1 billion transit system is expected to be signed in April.
Hennepin County Commissioner Peter McLaughlin said the project has risen to the top of a list of transit projects across the country vying for federal funding.
"I'm overjoyed and this administration has been highly supportive of it from day one," he said. "Now we got the full funding grant agreement sitting on congressional desks right now, waiting for final, final approval, this is reflective of the president's support."
But Congress ultimately controls funding for Central Corridor. Last year, the president recommended $45 million, but the project has yet to receive that installment.