Filing Date:

Varies; contact your state DOT or local FHWA official for more information.

Eligibility:

Funds are allocated to the state DOT which in turn disburses the funds to project sponsors. In general, a sponsor is an organization with the authority to tax and could include local governments, regional transportation authorities, transit agencies, public land agencies, tribal governments and any other local or regional governmental entity. Under the FAST Act, nonprofit entities responsible for the administration of local transportation safety programs are now able to apply for TA funds.

Oftentimes, non-profit organizations or community groups that wish to sponsor a TA project will submit an application in partnership with a local government. Consult your state TA officer for further information.

Description:

This program provides funding opportunities to help expand transportation choices and enhance the transportation experience through 10 eligible activities related to surface transportation, including historic preservation and vegetation management in transportation rights-of-way. Funds can also be used for the construction, planning and design of transportation projects to achieve compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

The definition of “historic” may vary from state to state, but usually it means that a site is eligible to be or is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Project sponsors must include various stakeholders in the planning and project development process, and once completed, the project must be accessible to the public.

TA funds are not to be used for the operation and/or long-term maintenance of eligible TA activities.

For example, a $1,000,000 Transportation Enhancements award (as the program was known under ISTEA) helped fund the relocation and renovation of the historicLafayette, Indiana, depot and the refurbishment of the Main Street Bridge for use as a bicycle and pedestrian path. The 1902 depot was moved three blocks from its original location in order to better serve the community. It is used by Amtrak and the local transportation service and contains a bank branch, a railroad historical society and the Downtown Business Center. The Depot Plaza is a popular venue for many events and festivals.

Dozens of historic railroad depots have been restored across the country through the aid of TA grants (and its predecessor, known as Transportation Enhancements). Some are still active railroad stations while others have become museums or community centers.

Learn more about the TA set-aside and its previous iterations at the Transportation Alternatives Data Exchange.

Financing:

In general, the federal share is 80 percent, with a 20 percent state and/or local match. The local match can vary by state. Sponsors usually pay the full cost of the project up front and are later reimbursed by the federal government through the state DOT. Some states allow the value of volunteer time for labor or services donated toward a project to be credited toward the project match.

An amount is set aside from each state’s STBG apportionment, such that the state receives a share of the national total TA funding. Another portion of TA funding is suballocated based on population. A metropolitan planning organization (MPO) with an urban population over 200,000 has authority to select and award funding from its sub-allocation to projects carried out within its urbanized bounds through a competitive selection process.

A state may also transfer to the National Highway Performance Program, National Highway Freight Program, the STBG Program, Highway Safety Improvement Program and Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program up to 50 percent of TA funds made available each fiscal year for TA projects in any area of the state.

Funding:

$835 million (FY 2016)
$835 million (FY 2017)
$850 million (FY 2018)
$850 million (FY 2019)
$850 million (FY 2020)

 

Additional Information: