USDOT Announces $1.5 Billion in Infrastructure Grants

RAISE Funding Is Intended to Improve Supply Chain Connectivity Nationwide
Pete Buttigieg
Buttigieg announces RAISE grants last June. (U.S. Department of Transportation)

[Stay on top of transportation news: Get TTNews in your inbox.]

The U.S. Department of Transportation recently announced the availability of grants designed to advance big-ticket infrastructure projects along commercial and commuter corridors.

The funding, offered via the Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity initiative, is intended to improve supply chain connectivity nationwide, said Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.

“Across the country, I have seen firsthand how projects funded by our RAISE program are helping communities realize long-held dreams and well-planned visions for better infrastructure,” Buttigieg said Nov. 30. Specifically, the $1.5 billion notice of RAISE funding availability would be used in assisting communities with finalizing projects that demonstrate significant local or regional economic impact. 

Agencies seeking a RAISE grant during this cycle must apply before the end of February. Grant winners will be announced before July, per DOT.

“We are delivering safer, cleaner infrastructure to communities of every size and in every part of the country, creating a new generation of jobs and helping families build generational wealth in the process,” Buttigieg said.

The notice of funding opportunity issued outlined criteria for applicants. “RAISE grants will be awarded on a competitive basis, per statute, for planning or constructing surface transportation infrastructure projects that will improve safety; environmental sustainability; quality of life; mobility and community connectivity; economic competitiveness and opportunity including tourism; state of good repair; partnership and collaboration; and innovation,” it said.

Last year, RAISE grants assisted 162 infrastructure projects. Among the projects was $10.5 million for the construction of a truck parking facility near the inland Port of Columbia in Louisiana. Per DOT, that project was intended to “increase multimodal freight movement and reduce supply chain bottlenecks, as truck parking is vital to goods movement operations and logistics.”

The department’s infrastructure grants are funding instruments in the infrastructure portfolio of President Joe Biden. As a result of 2021’s Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, the administration has dedicated billions of dollars for large-scale connectivity projects. For example, the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure law paved the way for the Federal Transit Administration’s recent announcement of $220.2 million in grants to modernize the nation’s ferry system.

Want more news? Listen to today's daily briefing above or go here for more info

“Today’s announcement represents our continued record support under the Biden-Harris administration for passenger ferry service,” FTA Administrator Nuria Fernandez said Nov. 30. “The grants help transit agencies make investments to increase reliability, improve connections to other modes of transportation, and bring older ferry systems into a state of good repair.”

On Capitol Hill, Rep. Rick Larsen (D-Wash.) touted the recent round of FTA grants. The congressman is the top Democrat on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. “Ferry service in America will soon improve thanks to the $220 million in investments announced today under the bipartisan infrastructure law,” Larsen said shortly after the announcement. “The Federal Transit Administration will fund 13 projects around the country to upgrade ferries and ferry terminals while expanding service in communities big and small, all while creating good-paying maritime jobs. Many of these projects support ferry electrification and resiliency enhancements to prepare these critical transportation systems for the future.”

“The bipartisan infrastructure law,” Larsen emphasized, “continues to create cleaner, greener, safer and more accessible transportation systems.”