The Bureau used a streamlined application form and reviewed applications on a first-come, first-served basis.  -  Photo: USDOT

The Bureau used a streamlined application form and reviewed applications on a first-come, first-served basis.


Photo: USDOT

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) announced it is advancing transportation projects in underserved communities across the United States by awarding 13 grants totaling $3.4 million through the new Rural and Tribal Assistance Pilot Program (RTA).

Administered by the Build America Bureau, the RTA grant program supports early-stage development of transportation solutions in rural and Tribal communities with grants funding technical, legal, and financial assistance. The Bureau received 406 applications requesting more than $127 million in funding. Of those, 70 applications totaling $19 million were submitted from Tribal applicants. 

"The number of applications received, and the amount of funding requested demonstrates the need for funding communities that have historically been left out of federal investment opportunities,” said Deputy U.S. Transportation Secretary Polly Trottenberg. “This is great progress in our mission to help our rural and Tribal partners realize their visions for safer and more efficient transportation options.” 

Selected Awardees

The selected awardees are: 

Applicant Project Award
City of Independence (Oregon) Design and engineering of Chestnut Street Bridge Replacement $320,000
City of Elkhorn  (Wisconsin) Design of Centralia Street Reconstruction and Bicycle Lane Addition $320,000
Roosevelt City (Utah)  Design, permitting, and estimating of 500 W. Roadway  $266,000 
Contra Costa County (California)  Design and estimating of Vasco Road Corridor Safety Improvements $320,000
Douglas County (Oregon)  Green Unincorporated Area Traffic Analysis and RAISE Grant Preparation  $311,000 
City of Blair (Nebraska)  Design of Missouri River Barge and Rail Expansion  $263,000
Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation (California)  Design of separated pedestrian pathway and lighting for Connected Communities $315,000 
Nulato Village (Alaska)  Design, permitting, and estimates for Nulato Small Port Development  $320,000 
Bois Forte Reservation Tribal Government (Minnesota)  Feasibility study for secondary evacuation route for Nett Lake  $175,000 
Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa (Minnesota)  Environmental study for Willard Munger State Trail Connection $320,000 
Karuk Tribe (California)  Tribal Transit Feasibility Study and Design for improved transit services  $40,000 
Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians (Michigan)  Design and permitting for new road and trail (Wi-Zhewébzet Ė-Zhyaygo: We Are Going Into the Future) $300,324
Igiugig Village Council (Alaska) Design and permitting for Diamond Point integrated breakwater and barge landing $129,676


“The Bureau is excited to work with these new partners to jump-start local projects and better position them to compete for DOT grants and explore innovative funding, financing, and delivery solutions,” said Bureau Executive Director Morteza Farajian. “The response to this funding opportunity was astounding and has highlighted how impactful the Program will be for our rural and Tribal communities. This is just the beginning.”

The Bureau used a streamlined application form and reviewed applications on a first-come, first-served basis.

This approach reduced the burden on applicants new to or inexperienced with the Federal grant process and the numerous forms traditionally required for Federal grants.

As part of the Administration’s commitment to advancing equity and opportunity for all American Indians, Alaska Natives, and Hawaiian Home Lands, the Transportation Secretary set a goal to increase engagement with Tribes on a government-to-government basis that respects the principles of Tribal self-governance.

To ensure equitable opportunity for Tribal governments to access the RTA grants, the Bureau reserved up to $1.6 million for Tribal applicants under this solicitation. 

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