News Column

Governor Walker Announces $1,000,000 Transportation Grant to City of Fitchburg

June 12, 2014



MADISON, Wis., June 12 -- The Wisconsin Department of Transportation issued the following news release:

Governor Scott Walker announced today that the city of Fitchburg will receive a Transportation Economic Assistance (TEA) grant. The $1,000,000 award represents the Wisconsin Department of Transportation's (WisDOT) contribution toward the design and construction of two new municipal streets: Sprocket and Spoke drives. The addition of these streets will provide safe and more convenient access to expanding Fitchburg businesses, Certco Inc. and Saris Cycling Group, Inc. Other growing businesses in the Arrowhead Neighborhood will also benefit from these improvements as the new streets will ease congestion and provide better access, particularly to shipping and receiving facilities.

Certco is a wholesale grocery distributor to independent supermarkets throughout Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa and Minnesota. It offers one of the largest varieties of products of any grocery wholesaler in the region. Currently, Certco has just under one million square feet of distribution space with room to grow and distributes more than 57,000 items to over 200 independent grocery retailers. This existing business development will retain 240 jobs.

Saris Cycling Group has called Fitchburg home since 1974, then known as Graber. Then in 1989, the Fortune family purchased, rebranded and transformed Graber into Saris Cycling Group. What started as a line of beautifully designed bike racks quickly grew into much more. Saris racks have always been Wisconsin made and locally sourced, as their world headquarters have never moved from their Fitchburg farmhouse. In 1994, Saris added to its rack line with the introduction of trunk racks followed by the acquisition of CycleOps trainers in 1999. Ten years later Saris launched the world's first cycling computer, currently manufactured under the name PowerTap. Now available in over 60 countries, Saris Cycling Group keeps their 170 plus employees working hard to produce high quality products every day.

This TEA grant will enable these two businesses to retain more than 400 jobs with an average wage of $22.15 per hour.

WisDOT's TEA grant covers 36 percent of the $2,795,623 construction project. The remainder is covered by the city of Fitchburg. The project should be completed by November 2014.

Since its start in 1987, Wisconsin's TEA grant program has invested almost $96 million in 340 projects, creating or retaining more than 84,000 jobs around the state. For a complete listing of TEA grants and project details, visit the TEA page on the WisDOT website (http://www.dot.wi.gov/localgov/aid/tea.htm).

The TEA grant program is a performance measure in WisDOT's MAPSS Performance Improvement Program. MAPSS focuses on five core goals of mobility, accountability, preservation, safety and service. To learn more, go to the MAPSS page on the WisDOT website (http://www.dot.wisconsin.gov/about/performance/index.htm).

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