Transportation Funding

Transportation funding mechanisms provide an opportunity to demonstrate the important and sometimes overlooked roles of parks and trails in transportation networks, especially as links within active commuting chains.

  • Carbon Reduction Program (CRP)

    The Bipartisan Infrastructure Act established the Carbon Reduction Program (CRP), which provides funds for projects designed to reduce transportation emissions, defined as carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from on-road highway sources. Eligible projects include the construction, planning, and design of on-and off-road trail facilities for pedestrians, bicyclists, and other nonmotorized forms of transportation. This recognizes the important role that trails and active transportation play in addressing and mitigating the climate impacts of the transportation sector, the largest carbon-emitting sector in the U.S. For more detailed information click here.  
    Park Funding Use
    Planning/Capital
    Eligibility for Accessing Funds
    City and County Governments
  • Transportation Infrastructure Financing and Innovation Act (TIFIA)

    The Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) program provides Federal credit assistance in the form of long-term and low-interest direct loans, loan guarantees, and standby lines of credit to finance surface transportation projects. 
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  • Thriving Communities Program

    The Department of Transportation created this program to provide technical assistance and capacity building. The program supports communities with planning and project development of transformative infrastructure projects that increase affordable transportation options, enhance economic opportunity, reduce environmental burdens, improve access and quality of life, and provide other benefits to disadvantaged communities.
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  • Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ)

    The Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ) Program provides funds to States for transportation projects designed to reduce traffic congestion and improve air quality, particularly in areas of the country that do not attain national air quality standards. The program has been a key mechanism for supporting investments that encourage alternatives to driving alone, improve traffic flow, and help urban areas meet air quality goals. Eligible projects include bicycle and pedestrian facilities. 
    Match from other sources
    20% state and local match, typically
    Park Funding Use
    Planning/Capital
    Eligibility for Accessing Funds
    State departments of transportation, Metropolitan planning organizations, Other eligible project sponsors (can partner with public, private, and nonprofit entities)
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Additional Resources

Share Your Experience

This Hub highlights select federal and state funding programs that can be particularly effective at funding parks and green infrastructure in low-income communities. It is not intended to be a comprehensive source of funding opportunities, but a starting point with examples, links to additional information, and case studies.

We invite you to help us make this Hub stronger by sharing your experiences applying for, and implementing programs with these funding sources.

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The U.S. Department of Transportation has numerous funding programs (planning, capital project, technical assistance, loan) that could aid with the creation of linear parks, trails, park access, and recreational facilities. Several of these programs received a boost in funding through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law passed in 2021 or are pilot programs that have a focus on improving public safety, climate resilience and equitable access to green space and recreation.