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RCP Additional Guidance

This page provides additional information specific to the Reconnecting Communities Pilot Program, including eligible applicants and activities for Community Planning and Capital Construction applications.

What is an Eligible Facility? 

A highway, including a road, street, or parkway or other transportation facility, such as a rail line, that creates a barrier to community connectivity, including barriers to mobility, access, or economic development, due to high speeds, grade separations, or other design factors. 

Funding Available

Fiscal Year 2022 2023 2024 2025 2026 Total
Planning and Technical Assistance $50M $50M $50M $50M $50M $250M
Capital Construction $145M $148M $150M $152M $155M $750M
Total Authorized Amount $195M $198M $200M $202M $205M $1,000M

Planning Grants

Planning grants may be used to study the feasibility and impacts of removing, retrofitting, or mitigating an existing eligible facility or to conduct planning activities necessary to design a project to remove, retrofit, or mitigate an existing eligible facility.

Who is eligible to apply for planning grant funding?

  • States
  • Units of local government
  • Federally recognized Tribal governments
  • Metropolitan planning organizations
  • Nonprofit organizations

Eligible planning activities

Planning studies to assess the feasibility of removing, retrofitting, or mitigating an existing eligible dividing facility to reconnect communities, including assessments of: 

  • Current traffic patterns on the facility and the surrounding street network.
  • Capacity of existing transportation networks to maintain mobility needs.
  • Alternative roadway designs or other uses for the right-of-way including green infrastructure or other nature-based solutions.
  • The project’s anticipated impact on mobility of freight and people.
  • The project’s anticipated impact on safety.
  • The estimated cost to restore community connectivity and to convert the facility to a different design or use, compared to any expected maintenance or reconstruction costs.
  • The project’s anticipated economic impact and development opportunities. 
  • The project’s anticipated environmental, public health, and community impacts. Public engagement activities, including community visioning or other place-based strategies for public input into project plans.
  • Other transportation planning activities required in advance of a project to remove, retrofit, or mitigate an existing eligible facility to restore community connectivity, as determined by DOT.

Technical Assistance

The Department must prioritize technical assistance to economically disadvantaged communities. The Department is launching the Reconnecting Communities Institute to provide technical assistance.

Technical assistance is for building organizational or community capacity to engage in transportation planning and to identify innovative solutions to infrastructure challenges, including reconnecting communities that are bifurcated by eligible facilities or lack safe, reliable, and affordable transportation options.

Capital Construction Grants 

Capital construction grants may be used for projects for which all necessary studies and other planning activities have been completed to remove, retrofit, mitigate, or to replace an existing eligible facility. 

Who is eligible to apply for capital construction grant funding? 

Eligible applicants for Capital Construction Grants are:

  • The Facility Owner or
  • Eligible applicants to Planning Grants may submit the application for a Capital Construction Grant, as long as the Owner of the eligible transportation facility is a joint applicant, with evidence of endorsing the application. 

Eligible capital construction projects

Preliminary and detailed design activities and associated environmental studies; predevelopment / preconstruction; permitting activities including the completion of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process for:

  • The removal, retrofit, or mitigation of an eligible dividing facility;
  • The replacement of an eligible dividing facility with a new facility that restores community connectivity; or
  • Delivering community benefits and environmental improvements or mitigation of impacts identified through the NEPA process or other planning and project development for the construction project. 

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You may send questions to