Transportation

Alaska cities, boroughs, and tribes can complete this transportation project intake survey for assistance from DOT&PF and AML with project development and identifying funding opportunities. This survey will help you access funding opportunities for surface transportation projects and assist in developing strong project proposals for both state programs and competitive federal grant opportunities.

Transportation

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) reauthorizes federal surface transportation programs for five years and invests approximately $400 billion over that period to repair our roads and bridges and support transformational projects that will create good-paying union jobs, boost regional and the national economy, make our transportation system safer and more resilient.

Funding Overview:
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law also contains significant new funding for roadways, bridges, and other major projects funded by the Federal Highway Administration and the Department of Transportation. Highlights include:

  • A total of $40 billion in dedicated funding for bridges. This funding includes $12.5 billion for the Bridge Investment Program, which is a competitive program to replace, rehabilitate, preserve, or protect some of the nation’s most important and economically significant bridges. The rest of the funds fall under the Bridge Formula Program, which provides formula funding to States to replace, rehabilitate, preserve, protect, and construct bridges on public roads. Notably, the program includes a 15 percent ($4 billion) set aside for off-system bridges. These are bridges often owned and maintained by cities, counties, and towns—and typically located on roads normally ineligible for federal highway funding. On January 14, 2022, the Department of Transportation released the first year of funding for the Bridge Formula Program. $5.3 billion will be available to states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico in Fiscal Year 2022, along with $165 million for Tribal governments. The federal government will also cover 100 percent of the cost of off-system bridge projects under the Bridge Formula Program for bridges owned by a local government or Tribe. (See Fiscal Year 2022 State apportionment here).
  • $8 billion for the Infrastructure for Rebuilding America (INFRA) Program, which supports freight and highway projects of regional and national significance.
  • $7.5 billion for Rebuilding American Infrastructure Sustainably and Equitably (RAISE) grants—a competitive grant program (formerly BUILD and TIGER) which provides funding for road, rail, transit, and other surface transportation of local and/or regional significance. Selection criteria includes safety, sustainability, equity, economic competitiveness, mobility, and community connectivity.
  • $5 billion for the National Infrastructure Project Assistance or “Megaprojects.” This program—sometimes referred to as the “Megaprojects program” or MEGA —provides grants on a competitive basis to support multijurisdictional or regional projects of significance that may also cut across multiple modes of transportation. Communities are eligible to apply for funding to complete critical large projects that would otherwise be unachievable without assistance.

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law also includes a five-year reauthorization for the Federal Highway Administration at the Department of Transportation. A major component of this reauthorization is $273.2 billion in Federal-aid highway formula funding for States. In December 2021, the Federal Highway Administration announced that it disbursed to all 50 states and the District of Columbia a total of $52.5 billion of this formula funding for Fiscal Year 2022; this represents a more than 20 percent increase over Fiscal Year 2021 formula funding. (See the Fiscal Year 2022 State apportionment here).

  1. Roads, Bridges, and Major Projects
  2. Passenger and Freight Rail
  3. Public Transportation
  4. Airports and Federal Aviation Administration Facilities
  5. Ports and Waterways
  6. Safety
  7. Electric Vehicles, Buses, and Ferries

The above information comes from the BIL Guidebook available at build.gov.

The USDOT Rural Infrastructure Fact Sheet has information on BIL programs that are designed for rural communities.

Agencies

The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (DOT&PF) will be the largest implementing agency for transportation projects under the Bipartisan Infrastructure in our state, as much of the formula funding under BIL is initially distributed to the states. As the parent agency for the Alaska Marine Highway System, DOT&PF is also closely involved in expansion and one-time maintenance of AMHS infrastructure and vessels; including the development of the Tustamena Replacement Vessel (TRV).

The Alaska Energy Authority (AEA) is the lead agency for major Electric Vehicle (EV) funding through the BIL; in particular, the $52.4 M National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) funding for Alaska will be allocated according to their Alaska EV Implementation Plan (due August 1). Check the AEA website for opportunities to contribute your comments to the development of this plan.

Transportation Grant Programs

  • Port Infrastructure Development Program Grants —This existing $2 billion Department of Transportation program funds investment in the modernization and expansion of U.S. ports to remove supply chain bottlenecks, ensure long-term competitiveness, and sustainability while reducing impacts to the environment and neighboring communities. The infrastructure law expanded the program’s eligibilities to include projects that improve disaster resilience, goods movement, as well as port electrification projects, idling reduction solutions, equipment charging infrastructure, resilience, and related worker training initiatives. The Department of Transportation posts the final NOFO and the application deadline was April 14, 2022. This grant is funded through the five years of the BIL and applications will be accepted on an annual basis.
  • Bus & Bus Facilities Competitive Grants — This existing $2 billion program at the Department of Transportation provides capital funding to replace, rehabilitate, purchase, or lease buses and bus-related equipment and to rehabilitate, purchase, construct, or lease bus-related facilities – as well as capital funding for low or no emissions bus projects. The fiscal Year 2021 grant selections will be announced soon. Applications for 2022 closed on May 31, 2022. This grant is funded through the five years of the BIL and applications will be accepted on an annual basis.
  • Safe Streets and Roads for All — This new $5 billion competitive grant program at the Department of Transportation will provide funding directly to and exclusively for local governments to support their efforts to advance “vision zero” plans and other complete street improvements to reduce crashes and fatalities, especially for cyclists and pedestrians. This grant is ideal for regional collaboration, and many eligible applicants in AK will need be applying for planning grants for this program at this point. The 2022 cycle for applications closes on September 15. See our summary of the 2022 NOFO here.
  •  National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) — Alaska will be allocated $52.4 M for EV’s under this program over 5 years. The Alaska Energy Authority is developing a Alaska EV Implementation Plan (due August 1) to direct the implementation of this funding. Check the AEA website for opportunities to contribute your comments to the development of this plan.
  • Clean School Bus Rebate Program — This new $5 billion competitive grant program at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will provide funding to replace existing school buses with low- or zero-emission school buses. Applications for this year’s rebates are available through August 19, 2022. This grant is funded through the five years of the BIL and applications will be accepted on an annual basis.
  • Reconnecting Communities Pilot Program — The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law creates a first-ever $1 billion program at the Department of Transportation to reconnect communities divided by transportation infrastructure – particularly historically disadvantaged communities too often nearly destroyed or cut in half by a highway. This new competitive program will provide dedicated funding to state, local, metropolitan planning organizations, and tribal governments for planning, design, demolition, and reconstruction of street grids, parks, or other infrastructure to address these legacy impacts. Applications will open in the second quarter of 2022.
  • Bridge Investment Program — This new competitive grant program, separate from the Bridge Formula Program passed down to states, will invest $12.5 billion in rehabilitating and replacing bridges and culverts over the next five years. It seeks to “improve the safety, efficiency, and reliability of the movement of people and freight over bridges” and provide assistance in the planning, design, and construction of projects. Application deadline are to be announced.
  • Small Community Air Service Development Program (SCASDP) — Provides financial assistance to small communities to help them enhance their air service. The Department provides this assistance in the form of grants that are disbursed on a reimbursable basis.No more than four communities or consortia of communities, or a combination thereof, from the same State may be selected to participate in the program in any fiscal year. No more than 40 communities or consortia of communities, or a combination thereof, may be selected to participate in the program in each year for which the funds are appropriated. Applications are due no later than 4:00 PM EDT on March 15, 2022.
  • Rebuilding American Infrastructure Sustainably and Equitably (RAISE) Grants — This existing competitive grant program at the Department of Transportation provides $7.5 billion with an additional $7.5 billion subject to Congressional approval in funding for road, rail, transit, and other surface transportation of local and/or regional significance. Selection criteria safety, sustainability, equity, economic competitiveness, mobility, and community connectivity. Applications will open in the first quarter of 2022.

Other Resources

USDOT Complete Streets Site

USDOT Equity Resources Planning Definition

Map – U.S. National Bridge Inventory