Public Transportation for All

Sept. 16, 2022
What the IIJA is doing to revitalize our public transportation system

Last week, we explored the first half of the public transportation funding that many states, cities, towns, tribal lands, and entities will receive as part of the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). This week, we finish up the list of funding for public transportation and what that investment means for us.

Public Transit Funding

  • State of Good Repair Grants: $21.6 billion in grants to assist in capital projects for existing fixed guideway systems and high intensity motorbus systems. This will help maintain public transportation systems and ensure public transportation operate safely, efficiently, reliably, and sustainably so that communities can offer balanced transportation choices that helps improve mobility, reduce congestion, and encourage economic development.
  • Research, Development, Demonstration, and Deployment Project: $132.2 million in competitive grants will aid to innovative projects and activities that advance and sustain safe, efficient, equitable, climate-friendly public transportation.
  • Congestion Relief Program: $250 million in competitive grants will be provided to advance innovative, integrated, and multimodal solutions to reduce congestion and the related economic and environmental costs in the most congested metropolitan areas with an urbanized area population of 1 million and over.
  • Crash Data Program: $750 million in competitive grants to improve crash data collection and analysis to revise non-motorist data collection to distinguish individual personal conveyances like electric scooters or bicycles, update the Model Minimum Uniform Crash Criteria, collect additional data elements related to vulnerable road users, coordinate with Centers for disease Control and Prevention on national database of injuries and fatalities, increase participation in Electronic Data Transfer protocol via new State grant program and internal investment, and expand the Crash Investigation Sampling system by adding sites, broadening scope, and adopting on-scene investigation protocol.
  • All Stations Accessibility Program: $1.75 billion in funding will upgrade the accessibility of legacy rail fixed guideway public transportation systems for people with disabilities.
  • High Priority Activities Program: $432.5 million in grants will provide Federal financial assistance to enhance states’ commercial vehicle inspections, traffic enforcement, and outreach while supporting innovative technology and/or new project(s) not included in the commercial vehicle safety plan.
  • Wildlife Crossings Pilot Program: $350 million in grants to support projects that seek to reduce the number of wildlife-vehicle collisions, while improving habitat connectivity.
  • Commercial Driver’s License Implementation Program: $297.5 million in funding will assist grant partners in achieving compliance with the commercial driver’s license regulations in 49 CFR Parts 383 and 384 by providing funding directly to states and other entities capable of executing national projects to aid states in their compliance efforts.

The IIJA’s investment to repair, modernize, and transform the public transit system in our country is admirable, and many Americans will finally be able to access a crucial part of our infrastructure, including the elderly and those with disabilities. By replacing deficient transit vehicles with clean, zero emission vehicles, the is an environmental benefit to these programs, as well. Stay tuned next week for our on-going series on the IIJA and catch up on the entire series only at Roads & Bridges.


Source: GFOA

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