On Thursday, the U.S. Department of Transportation announced more than $4.9 billion in funding for 37 infrastructure projects.
The funding, will come from the National Infrastructure Project Assistance (Mega) grant program and the Infrastructure for Rebuilding America (INFRA) grant program, both part of Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
“With this announcement, we are advancing projects so large, complex, and ambitious that they could not get funded under the infrastructure programs that existed prior to the Biden administration,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said. “Our INFRA and Mega programs are helping build the cathedrals of American infrastructure: truly transformative projects that will change entire regions and our entire country for the better.”
The Mega program will provide funding for 11 projects that are large, complex and difficult to fund under traditional grant programs. Officials said the projects will generate national and regional economic, mobility and safety benefits. The INFRA program, will invest in 28 large scale, transformational infrastructure projects, that will improve safety, efficiency and reliability for the movement of freight and people, officials said. More than half of the projects are being funded are in rural communities.
Two projects received awards from both programs as part of the DOT’s commitment to invest in non-traditional, multimodal projects that have been neglected due to difficulties in funding them.
Included in the Mega funded projects are the Interstate Bridge Replacement Program, which will receive $600 million to update Interstate 5 between Portland, OR and Vancouver, WA with a seismically resilient replacement bridge for the I-5 bridge over the Columbia River; and the Eastern Pittsburgh Multimodal Corridor Project, which will receive $142 million to make improvements along I-376 in Pittsburgh, PA.
Projects receiving INFRA funding include the Blatnik Bridge Replacement Project which will receive $1 billion to replace the Blatnik Bridge between Duluth, Minn., and Superior, Wis.; and the missing ramps on I-95 to Quonset Business Park in Rhode Island will receive $81 million to complete the gaps between I-95 and RI-4 to create a direct connection between the two, alleviating congestion and strengthening accessibility for rural communities.
Both the International Container Terminal in Louisiana and the Mineral County I-90 Improvement Plan project in Montana received funding from both programs, with the Terminal project at the Port of New Orleans receiving $300 million (approximately $74 million in Mega funds and $226 million in INFRA funds), and the I-90 Project receiving $66 million ($32 million in Mega funds and $34 million in INFRA funds).