Municipal Funding Opportunities
DVRPC selects projects for federal and state transportation funding and provides project management assistance to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) for specific federally funded transportation projects. By working with local project sponsors, DVRPC helps to implement construction projects by moving the projects through design approvals and ultimately into construction. DVRPC also administers several grant programs that help municipalities conduct planning work to improve the transportation system and create livable communities.
The TIP is the regionally agreed upon list of priority transportation projects, as required by federal law. The TIP document must list all projects that intend to use federal funds, along with all non-federally funded projects that are regionally significant. We also include all other state-funded capital projects. The projects are multimodal; that is, they include bicycle, pedestrian, ITS, safety, and freight-related projects, as well as the more traditional highway and public transit projects. Municipalities are encouraged to work closely with their county planning departments in submitting projects for inclusion in the TIP.
TAPs are federal highway and transit funds set aside under the Surface Transportation Program for community-based "non-traditional" projects designed to strengthen the cultural, aesthetic, and environmental aspects of the nation's intermodal transportation system. The TE funding category, which has historically funded many pedestrian- and bicycle-supportive projects such as streetscape improvements, was originally established by Congress in 1991 under the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act transportation authorization legislation, and was most recently affirmed as TAP under the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act.
The SRTS program is being administered by NJDOT in partnership with DVRPC. The objectives of the SRTS program are: (1) to enable and encourage children, including those with disabilities, to walk and bicycle to school; (2) to make bicycling and walking to school a safer and more appealing transportation alternative, thereby encouraging a healthy and active lifestyle from an early age; and (3) to facilitate the development and implementation of projects and activities that will improve safety and reduce traffic, fuel consumption, and air pollution in the vicinity of New Jersey's primary and middle schools. Projects must be located within two miles of a school in Burlington, Camden, Gloucester, or Mercer counties, and serve students in grades K–8. Infrastructure projects may include the installation of sidewalks, crosswalks, bike lanes, multi-use paths, traffic calming measures, and other means to ensure the ease and safety of children walking or biking to school.
TreeVitalize is a program launched by the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to increase public awareness of the importance of community trees and to reverse the loss of tree cover in the state's metropolitan areas. To directly reverse that loss, DVRPC has partnered with the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS) to access funding from PENNVEST for tree-planting projects that manage stormwater. To date, the DVRPC/PHS partnership has received funding awards from PENNVEST to plant over 4,500 trees in communities across the region.
TCDI provides planning grants to support local development and redevelopment efforts in the region's core cities, developed communities, and mature suburbs.
The Regional Trails Program, administered by DVRPC with funding from the William Penn Foundation, aims to capitalize upon opportunities for trail development by providing funding for targeted, priority trail design; construction; and planning projects that will promote a truly connected, regional network of multi-use trails with Philadelphia and Camden as its hubs. The program will provide technical assistance to trail developers, counties, municipalities, and nonprofit organizations.
In an effort to reduce the number of structurally deficient bridges, DVRPC's Municipal Bridge Retro-Reimbursement Program seeks to fund locally owned, structurally deficient bridge rehabilitation or replacement projects located within Bucks, Chester, Delaware, and Montgomery counties by employing PennDOT's retro-reimbursement process. Beginning in Fiscal Year 2016, $6 million of state bridge funds will be made available for selected municipal bridge projects with deck spans of 20' in length or greater.
DVRPC's competitive CMAQ seeks transportation-related projects that can help the region reduce emissions from mobile sources and meet national Clean Air Act standards. The program offers federal matching funds for projects in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia counties in Pennsylvania, and Burlington, Camden, Gloucester, and Mercer counties in New Jersey.
The ARLE Funding Program provides transportation enhancement grants to local, regional, and commonwealth agencies for projects that improve highway safety and mobility.
The Energy Works program, funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy, connects business owners and nonprofits with available rebates, tax credits, and very low-interest loans. Energy Works is a program of the Metropolitan Caucus comprising the five counties of southeastern Pennsylvania (Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Philadelphia, and Montgomery).
The Pennsylvania Treasury Department has partnered with the Foundation for Renewable Energy and Environment (FREE), with financial support from the West Penn Power Sustainable Energy Fund, to develop a prudent, market-based investment vehicle that promotes energy and water efficiency, clean energy generation, economic development and environmental improvement.
PA DCNR provides a number of grant opportunities for municipalities to be used for land and natural resource conservation or to expand recreational and trail facilities.
The Pennsylvania Recreation & Parks Society is a non-profit organization that promotes quality recreation and park training and networking. They have identified a number of funding sources for municipal recreation and park systems.