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Federal Funding Streams, Infrastructure & Maintenance Investments

Are there opportunities in the Infrastructure Investment & Job Act to repave or reconstruct thoroughfare, arterial, and residential streets?

The Infrastructure Investment & Job Act (“IIJA”) provides many opportunities to improve different types of infrastructure, including roadways, across the country.

Some competitive grant programs that received funding through IIJA to support repairs and improvements to roads are: (1) Infrastructure for Rebuilding America (“INFRA”) Grants Program; (2) National Infrastructure Project Assistance (“Megaprojects”); (3) Promoting Resilient Operations for Transformative, Efficient, and Cost Saving Transportation (“PROTECT”) grants; (4) the Reconnecting Communities Pilot Program, Rural Surface Transportation Grant Program (“Rural”); (5) Rebuilding American Infrastructure Sustainably and Equitability (“RAISE”) grants; and (6) Safe Streets and Roads for All.[1]

Each of these competitive grant programs select projects (including roadway projects) based on different sets of criteria:

  • INFRA – eligible projects “improve safety, generate economic benefits, reduce congestion, enhance resiliency, and hold the greatest promise to eliminate freight bottlenecks and improve critical freight movements.”[2]
  • Megaprojects – eligible projects “support large, complex projects that are difficult to fund by other means and likely to generate national or regional economic, mobility, or safety benefits.”[3]
  • PROTECT – eligible projects “conduct resilience planning, strengthen and protect evacuation routes, and increase the resilience of surface transportation infrastructure from the impacts of sea level rise, flooding, wildfires, extreme weather events, and other natural disasters.” Moreover, “[h]ighway, transit, and certain port projects are eligible.”[4]
  • RAISE – eligible projects reflect community connectivity, mobility, accessibility for travelers, universal design, and increased mobility for supply chain and freight efficiency. RAISE grants were previously known as BUILD and TIGER grants.[5]
  • Reconnecting Communities Pilot Program – eligible projects “restore community connectivity by removing, retrofitting, or mitigating highways or other transportation facilities that create barriers to community connectivity, including to mobility, access, or economic development.”[6]
  • Rural – eligible projects “improve and expand the surface transportation infrastructure in rural areas to increase connectivity, improve the safety and reliability of the movement of people and freight, and generate regional economic growth and improve quality of life.”[7]
  • Safe Streets and Roads for All -- eligible projects “support local initiatives to prevent death and serious injury on roads and streets, commonly referred to as ‘Vision Zero’ or ‘Toward Zero Deaths’ initiatives.”[8] The White House is expected to release additional program information in May 2022.[9]

Applicants may refer to USDOT resources for additional information about the INFRA,[10] RAISE,[11] and Mega programs.[12]

At the time of this writing, the U.S. Department of Transportation has published a list of upcoming anticipated Notices of Funding Opportunity, some of which may assist applicants with road repairs.[13] Potential applicants should monitor the White House Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Guidebook for updates on specific deadlines and details pertaining to a number of pending IIJA grant programs.[14]

Last Updated: April 25, 2022

[1] The White House, “A Guidebook to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law for State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial Governments and other Partners,” at 9-11, 34, 119, and 267, available at: https://www.whitehouse.gov/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/BUILDING-A-BETTER-AMERICA_FINAL.pdf.

[2] U.S. Department of Transportation, “The INFRA Grants Program,” at 1, available at: https://www.transportation.gov/grants/infra-grants-program.

[3] U.S. Department of Transportation, “The Mega Grant Program,” at 1, available at: https://www.transportation.gov/grants/mega-grant-program.

[4] The White House, “A Guidebook to the bipartisan Infrastructure Law for State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial Governments and other Partners,” at 273, available at: https://www.whitehouse.gov/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/BUILDING-A-BETTER-AMERICA_FINAL.pdf.

[5] U.S. Department of Transportation, “RAISE Discretionary Grants,” at 1, available at: https://www.transportation.gov/RAISEgrants.

[6] The White House, “A Guidebook to the bipartisan Infrastructure Law for State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial Governments and other Partners,” at 34, available at: https://www.whitehouse.gov/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/BUILDING-A-BETTER-AMERICA_FINAL.pdf.

[7] Department of Transportation, “MPDG – Frequently Asked Questions,” available at: https://www.transportation.gov/grants/mpdg-frequently-asked-questions.

[8] White House, “A Guidebook to the bipartisan Infrastructure Law for State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial Governments and other Partners,” at 121, available at: https://www.whitehouse.gov/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/BUILDING-A-BETTER-AMERICA_FINAL.pdf.

[9] Id.

[10] U.S. Department of Transportation, “INFRA,” at 1-24, available at: https://www.transportation.gov/sites/dot.gov/files/2022-03/FY-2021-INFRA-Proposed-Project-Selections-v2.pdf.

[11] U.S. Department of Transportation, “RAISE Discretionary Grants,” available at: https://www.transportation.gov/RAISEgrants.

[12] U.S. Department of Transportation, “MPDG – Frequently Asked Questions,” available at: https://www.transportation.gov/grants/mpdg-frequently-asked-questions.

[13] U.S. Department of Transportation, “Upcoming Notice of Funding Opportunity Announcements in 2022,” available at: https://www.transportation.gov/bipartisan-infrastructure-law/upcoming-notice-funding-opportunity-announcements-2022.

[14] The White House, “A Guidebook to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law for State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial Governments and other Partners,” at 5–6, available at: https://www.whitehouse.gov/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/BUILDING-A-BETTER-AMERICA_FINAL.pdf.