Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx at the launch of the Build America Bureau last month. Photo via USDOT.
The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) offers a number of different grant and loan programs for innovative transportation projects. But navigating the application process for these programs—or even knowing exactly what types of projects are eligible under each one—can be complicated.
To help cities and state navigate and better utilize all these programs, last month USDOT launched the the Build America Bureau, a one-stop shop for information about how to apply for federal transportation grants and loans. As Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx explained at the launch, the Bureau will “streamline credit opportunities and grants more quickly and transparently, while providing technical assistance and encouraging innovative best practices in project planning, financing, delivery, and monitoring.”
That’s great news for anyone who needs help navigating the diverse funding opportunities available through USDOT. It’s particularly great for communities interested in lesser-known programs like the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) and the Railroad Rehabilitation & Improvement Financing (RRIF). TIFIA and RRIF can both be used for transit-oriented development—a strategy that makes the most of public investments while also creating walkable neighborhoods served by transit—but both funding pools could be much better utilized for these kinds of projects.
So many communities are interested in building TOD but don’t know how to make the financing work. USDOT’s new Bureau will help connect interested communities to these funding opportunities, and in doing so help more Americans live and work near convenient, affordable transportation options. Visit USDOT’s website to learn more.