The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Paul S. Sarbanes Transit in Parks Program, which funds capital and planning expenses for alternative transportation systems including buses, trams and non-motorized systems in and near federally managed parks and public lands, is soliciting proposals for $25 million worth of grants it plans to divvy up among 45 awardees. Deadline is May 9.
Established to help cut increasing vehicle congestion in and around national parks and other federal lands, the grants are open to tribal government authorities, plus state and local governmental authorities, that have jurisdiction over land near an eligible area and are working with a federal land management agency such as the Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, or the U.S. Forest Service.
“America’s national parks, wildlife refuges, and national forests were created to protect unique environmental and cultural treasures, but are now facing traffic, pollution and crowding that diminishes the visitor experience and threatens the environment,” the Federal Transportation Administration (FTA) says on its site. The program “seeks to conserve natural, historical, and cultural resources; reduce congestion and pollution; improve visitor mobility and accessibility; enhance visitor experience; and ensure access to all, including persons with disabilities.”
It’s administered jointly by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), the Department of the Interior and the U.S. Forest Service.
Eligible project areas include any federally owned or managed park, refuge or recreational area open to the general public, including: national parks, national wildlife refuges, Bureau of Land Management recreational areas, Bureau of Reclamation recreational areas and national forests, the DOT said. Communities and land surrounding these federal lands can also be included.
Announcements of this and other programs are available here.