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Thriving Communities Program

Building Community Capacity to Take Transformative Projects from Concept to Completion

A group of people collaborating around a table, using laptops and handwritten notes.

Program Overview

Funded with $25 million through the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2022, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) new Thriving Communities Program (TCP) aims to ensure that disadvantaged communities adversely or disproportionately affected by environmental, climate, and human health policy outcomes have the technical tools and organizational capacity to compete for federal aid and deliver quality infrastructure projects that enable their communities and neighborhoods to thrive.

TCP facilitates the planning and development of transportation and community revitalization activities and provides tools to ensure that under-resourced communities can access the historic funding provided in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL).

The Thriving Communities Program will be administered by the Build America Bureau as part of its broader efforts to provide technical assistance to communities. 

The Thriving Communities Program is part of the larger Federal Thriving Communities Initiative. Through this Initiative, DOT is coordinating with other federal agency partners to form the Thriving Communities Network and is partnering with philanthropy to ensure that all communities can access federal resources and implement programs that help them thrive.

Two Opportunities for Potential Applicants

For fiscal year (FY) 2022 funding, the Thriving Communities Program offered two separate response opportunities for potential applicants: a Letter of Interest and a Notice of Funding Opportunity, which are described below. The Letter of Interest opportunity closed on December 6, 2022, and the Notice of Funding Opportunity closed on November 29, 2022.

Are You Interested in Receiving Support? Submit a Letter of Interest

Applicant decision tree: If I am a State, local, or Tribal government; United States territory; metropolitan or rural transportation planning organization; transit agency, or another political subdivision of a state or local government, and I want to receive capacity building, planning, and technical assistance support, I should identify community partners to submit a Letter of Interest by December 6.Beginning in 2023, the Thriving Communities Program will provide technical assistance, planning, and capacity building support to teams of community partners that may lack the staffing or technical expertise to scope, fund, and develop infrastructure projects that advance broader community goals.

TCP will provide two years of deep-dive assistance to selected communities to help them plan and develop a pipeline of comprehensive transportation, housing, and community revitalization activities.

There is no cost to receive this support. This opportunity closed on December 6, 2022. 

Learn More About the Call for Letters of Interest

Are You Interested in Providing Support? Apply to the Notice of Funding Opportunity

In addition, through the Thriving Communities Program, DOT will fund organizations to provide technical assistance, planning, and capacity building support to enable selected recipient communities to plan and develop transportation and community revitalization activities that:

  • Applicant decision tree: If I am a non-profit organization, State or local government (or an agency of a state or local government), Indian Tribe, philanthropic entity, or another technical assistance provider with demonstrated capacity to develop and provide technical assistance, planning, and capacity building, and I want to provide capacity building, planning, and technical assistance support, I should apply through the Notice of Funding Opportunity by November 29.Increase mobility
  • Reduce pollution from transportation sources
  • Expand affordable transportation options
  • Facilitate efficient land use
  • Preserve or expand jobs
  • Improve housing conditions
  • Enhance connections to health care, education, and food security
  • Improve health outcomes

The Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) closed on November 29, 2022, for those wishing to become a capacity builder

Cooperative agreements between $3.5 million and $6 million will be awarded to up to six capacity building teams.

Learn More About the Notice of Funding Opportunity

A Federal Partnership with Communities

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law provides funding for transformative investments in infrastructure, clean energy, and jobs, but not every community has the same ability to leverage this once-in-a-generation investment.

Urban, rural, and Tribal communities that have suffered historic disinvestment often lack the resources and capacity to successfully engage, develop, design, and deliver infrastructure projects. The Biden administration is committed to closing access gaps by providing targeted support to navigate federal requirements, identify funding and financing opportunities, and grow long-term capacity to leverage transportation investments to achieve broader economic and community development goals.

TCP is coordinating efforts with other federal technical assistance programs and federal staff in regional and state offices to meet communities where they are at and leverage resources.

The Thriving Communities Program recognizes the power of local communities to drive innovation if they have the tools to succeed. This program provides hands-on planning support and access to a diverse set of technical assistance providers available to work directly with communities as they build upon local assets to co-design and advance infrastructure projects that address critical social, economic, environmental, and mobility needs.

As a result of the Thriving Communities Program, a pipeline of diverse and transformative community-driven infrastructure projects will be advanced across the country to drive inclusive economic growth, build resiliency, and ensure that every place has a chance to thrive.

Thriving Communities is key component of USDOT’s Equity Action Plan.

Thriving Communities Program: Guiding transportation projects from concept to completion.

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Last updated: Monday, December 19, 2022