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USDOT’s Role in Rural Transportation

The mission of the United States Department of Transportation is to ensure our Nation has the safest, most efficient and modern transportation system in the world, which improves the quality of life for all American people and communities, from rural to urban, and increases the productivity and competitiveness of American workers and businesses.

USDOT Strategic Goals

  • Safety | Reduce Transportation-Related Fatalities and Serious Injuries Across the Transportation System
  • Infrastructure | Invest in Infrastructure to Ensure Safety, Mobility and Accessibility and to Stimulate Economic Growth, Productivity and Competitiveness for American Workers and Businesses
  • Innovation | Lead in the Development and Deployment of Innovative Practices and Technologies that Improve the Safety and Performance of the Nation's Transportation System
  • Accountability | Serve the Nation with Reduced Regulatory Burden and Greater Efficiency, Effectiveness and Accountability

More information can be found in the U.S. Department of Transportation Strategic Plan for FY 2018-2022.

In support of its overall mission and strategic goals, the Department administers a large portfolio of funding and financial assistance programs to maintain and improve the Nation’s transportation network. Each year, the Department awards billions of dollars in discretionary grants to fund safety improvements and innovative transportation solutions across the country. USDOT is committed to improving infrastructure and addressing other challenges to improve safety outcomes in rural communities, increase quality of life for rural residents, and fuel American economic competitiveness. 

With this goal in mind, the Secretary of Transportation launched the Rural Opportunities to Use Transportation for Economic Success (R.O.U.T.E.S.) initiative in October 2019. This initiative aims to help the Department enhance discretionary grant funding opportunity processes, with a focus on supporting the transportation needs of rural applicants and communities. 

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Last updated: Friday, July 23, 2021