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Reconnecting Communities Institute (RCI)

DOT will provide technical assistance for grantees and potential grantees under the Reconnecting Communities Pilot (RCP) Program through the forthcoming Reconnecting Communities Institute (RCI) launching later in 2023.

The mission of the RCI will be to serve as DOT’s center for learning to restore and reconnect communities that have been harmed, isolated, and cut off from opportunity by transportation infrastructure. Enrollment into the RCI will be open to States, local and tribal governments, metropolitan planning organizations, and nonprofit organizations. DOT will prioritize enrollment for entities serving economically disadvantaged communities, including rural and Tribal communities.  

The RCI will provide training and technical assistance to build organizational or community capacity in transportation planning and identify innovative strategies and solutions for reconnecting communities that are bifurcated by transportation infrastructure that create barriers. The RCI will provide capacity building through group and peer-based virtual leaning, and one-on-one assistance to participants in the following areas:

  • Project scoping and development, including meaningful public involvement and transportation planning
  • Travel demand modeling 
  • Equitable development and community-wealth building strategies 
  • Project funding and financing
  • Design and preliminary engineering within the planning and pre-construction phases 
  • Data collection and performance metrics to capture the impacts of reconnecting projects 

Participants may include:

  • RCP program planning grant recipients 
  • RCP program capital construction grant recipients
  • Prospective grant applicants to the RCP program or other Federal grant programs that fund reconnecting activities
  • Unsuccessful RCP program grant applicants
  • Eligible entities otherwise interested in building organizational or community capacity in transportation planning to advance the restoration and reconnection of communities.