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Reconnecting Communities Institute (RCI)

DOT is providing technical assistance for grantees and potential grantees under the Reconnecting Communities Pilot (RCP) Program through the Reconnecting Communities Institute (RCI). Technical assistance opportunities can be found at the bottom of this page. 

The mission of the RCI is 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 is 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. 

Current Technical Assistance Opportunities

To support communities in preparing strong RCP Program grant applications, the Reconnecting Communities Institute (RCI) is hosting a series of no-cost, virtual Grant Writing Clinics and Office Hours. Led by experts with deep experience in federal grant programs, and in assisting communities with transportation reconnection projects, these events will include: 

  • An overview of the RCP Program grant opportunity and RCI.
  • A panel discussion and Q&A with previous grant recipients.
  • Focused strategy sessions covering grant application topics such as equitable development, workforce development, climate and environment, community engagement, partnerships, and more.  
  • Office hours to connect with experts, learn about RCP Program grants, and ask specific questions about the grant application.

Whether you represent a state, local, or Tribal government, regional, or nonprofit entity, these clinics and office hours will empower your organization with the knowledge and skills to create a stellar grant application. Register for a virtual event using the provided links and choose a time that suits your schedule. Feel free to attend as many events as you like, whether that is just one or all of them.

Grant Writing Clinics

Office Hours

For more information, please view the RCI Resource Library or contact RCI at RCI@dot.gov.