Thirty-six states were awarded nearly $140 million in additional federal aid this week to assist 249 transportation improvement projects, the U.S. Department of Transportation announced Wednesday, June 24. A list of this year’s grant recipients is available online at
In addition, USDOT announced more than $5.2 million in grants to 14 states to promote the use of innovative technologies in highway bridge construction and repair. For a list of the projects, go to www.dot.gov/affairs/2009/fhwa1709.htm.
The 249 transportation improvement projects range from the widening of U.S. 17 in Putnam County, Fla., to streetscape improvements in Haverhill, Mass., to the replacement of the U.S. 159 bridge at Rulo, Neb., near the Kansas-Missouri state line. “Given the demands on the nation’s transportation system, these grants will be a vital help to communities across the country,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood says.
Through the Transportation, Community and System Preservation (TCSP) Program, states, local and Tribal governments may apply for federal funding to support methods of increasing transportation efficiency, roadway improvements and research. In the years since the program’s creation in 1998, nearly $800 million in TCSP grants have been awarded to improve national transportation efficiency, reduce environmental impacts of transportation and improve the cost-effectiveness of infrastructure investment.
The TCSP Program is managed by the Federal Highway Administration, in conjunction with the Federal Transit Administration, the Federal Rail Administration and the Research and Innovative Technology Administration within USDOT and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
The Innovative Bridge Research and Deployment (IBRD) program, administered by the Federal Highway Administration, promotes more widespread use of effective and beneficial technologies and applications that are not common practice and encourages states to use these technologies. Previous grants have funded bridge prefabrication projects in which parts are built offsite and then placed onto a bridge; utilizing prefabrication strategies saves drivers countless hours of congestion caused by prolonged bridge work.
“Advanced bridge construction and repair techniques cut construction time and repair costs, and ultimately reduce traffic delays,” LaHood says. “These funds will be spent on improvements that ultimately offer a better experience for our nation’s drivers.”
The program was authorized by the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU) legislation to promote innovative design, materials and methods that improve construction and repair of the nation’s highway bridges.