Federal Transit_Capital Investment Grants

To assist in financing the acquisition, construction, reconstruction, and improvement of facilities, rolling stock and equipment for use in public transportation service.

Funds are currently made available is three categories: Fixed Guideway Modernization formula program; Bus and Bus Facilities

discretionary program; and New Starts discretionary program (new fixed guideway systems and extensions of existing systems).

Related Programs

Examples of Funded Projects

Bus and Bus Facilities: Flint, Michigan, Mass Transportation Authority Rehabilitation/Construction of the downtown Flint Transfer Center New Starts: Portland, Oregon, Tri-County Metropolitan Transportation District Design and construct a 14.7 mile commuter rail line Fixed Guideway Modernization: Ventura County, California, Ventura County Transportation Commission Rehabilitation of rail tracks.

Agency - Department of Transportation

The Department of Transportation's mission is to ensure fast, safe, efficient, accessible and convenient transportation that meets vital national interests and enhances the quality of life of the American people, today and into the future.

Office - See Appendix IV: Agency Regional and Local Office Addresses of the Catalog for a listing of the Federal Transit regional offices.
Website Address


Relevant Nonprofit Program Categories

Program Accomplishments

In fiscal year 2007, $4.7 billion was obligated under the capital grants for Bus and bus facilities, to replace over-aged buses and expand service; fixed guideway modernization; and New Starts projects in 13 States and the District of Columbia.

Uses and Use Restrictions

Funds may be used to assist State and local governmental authorities in financing: capital projects for new fixed guideway systems, and extensions to existing fixed guideway systems, including the acquisition of real property, the initial acquisition of rolling stock for the systems, and the acquisition of rights of way, and relocation, for fixed guideway corridor development for projects in the advanced stages of alternatives analysis or preliminary engineering; capital projects, the acquisition, construction, reconstruction and improvement of facilities and equipment for use by operation or lease or otherwise in mass transportation service, including property and improvements needed for an efficient and coordinated mass transportation system, including buses and bus facility equipment; the capital costs of coordinating transit with other transportation; and the introduction of new technology, through innovative and improved transportation; and the introduction of new technology, through innovative and improved products.

Consideration may also be given for projects which enhance urban economic development; establish new or enhanced coordination between transit and other transportation; or enhance the effectiveness of a transit project and are related physically or functionally to that transit project.

It could also include financing for transit projects planned, designed, and carried out to meet the special needs of elderly individuals and individuals with disabilities; for the development of corridors to support fixed guideway systems, including protecting rights of way through acquisition, construction of dedicated bus and high occupancy vehicle lanes and park-and-ride lots, and other nonvehicular capital improvements that the Secretary may decide would result in increased transit usage in the corridor.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

Public agencies, including States; municipalities and other subdivisions of States; public agencies and instrumentalities of one or more States; and public corporations, boards, and commissions established under State law.

Applicant must have legal, financial, and technical capacity to carry out proposed project, including safety and security aspects, and maintain facilities and equipment purchased with Federal assistance.

Fixed Guideway formula funds are approtioned by formula to urbanized areas over 200,000 population with fixed guideway segments at least one mile long that are over seven years old.

Bus and New Starts programs are allocated entirely to projects designated by Congress.

Private non-profit organizations are not eligible direct recipients.

Beneficiary Eligibility

The general public, both users and non-users of public transportation. Public agencies, although private transportation companies may participate through contractual arrangements with public agency grantee.


Resolution by an authorized public body approving the filing for an application; projects must be included in an urbanized area's transportation improvement program (TIP), in the State transportation improvement program (STIP) and approved by FTA and FHWA; information must be provided on labor and relocation; environmental impact statement; legal opinion; coordinated regional planning documentation; maintenance certification; and compliance with certifications and assurances as compiled in FTA's Annual List of Certifications and Assurances. Cost will be in accordance with OMB Circular No. A-87 for State and local governments. Federal Register Notice FTA Fiscal Year Apportionments, Allocations, and Program Information, published annually contains the capital investment apportionments. For fiscal year 2008, the publication date was January 28, 2008. For other fiscal years, contact the FTA Regional Office to obtain the publication dates or the FTA website: www.fta.dot.gov/.

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

This program is eligible for coverage under E.O.

12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.

An environmental impact assessment may be required for this program.

An environmental impact statement may also be required upon completion of review of the assessment.

Application Procedures

This program is subject to the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-87 and 49 CFR Part 18 and FTA Circular 9300.1A, "Capital Program: Grant Application Instructions," October 1, 1998. Applications are made to the regional offices of the Federal Transit Administration listed in Appendix IV of the Catalog.

Award Procedures

An FTA grant award obligating Federal funds is reflected in a grant agreement. Grants are awarded electronically using FTA's Transportation Electronic Award Management (TEAM) system, http://ftateamweb.fta.dot.gov/fta-flash2b.html. In order to access this system, a user name and password are needed and can be obtained by contacting the regional offices. Once the funds are reserved in TEAM and the project information has been reviewed and approved by Headquarters, the recipient must execute the grant agreement to access the funds.


Funds designated by Congress for New Starts or Bus projects must be obligated within three fiscal years, unless extended by Congress. Fixed Guideway Modernizatin formula funds must be obligated within four fiscal years.


49 U.S.C. 5309.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

In FY 2005, FTA obligated Section 5309 Capital Grants in an average of 40 days after submission of a complete application.


Not applicable.


Funding is made available annually through the appropriation process. Grants may be amended to add newly available funds for a continuing project.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

Funds for fixed guideway modernization are apportioned by statutory formula to eleven legislatively specified areas, and to other areas that have fixed guideway mileage that is over 7 years old. Funds for bus and bus related improvements and New Starts are allocated on a discretionary basis, and can be allocated on a statutory basis. A grant may be made up to 80 percent of net project cost. Vehicle related equipment required to comply with ADA or Clean Air Act may be funded at 90 percent Federal share.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

Terms and conditions are contractually agreed on between FTA and the applicant. The grants may be awarded in one lump sum or in smaller increments as specified by the grantee.

Post Assistance Requirements


(1) Progress reports; (2) Financial status reports; (Submitted quarterly for recipients in urbanized areas over 200,000 population, annually for other recipients and states); (3) construction reports where applicable.


In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-133, Audits of State and Local Governments and Nonprofit Organizations, nonfederal entities that expend $500,000 or more in a year in Federal awards shall have a single or program specific audit conducted for that year. Nonfederal entities that expend less than $500,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year with certain exceptions as stated in OMB Circular No. A-133.


Recipient is required to retain intact, for 3 years following submission of final expenditure report, pending resolution of audit findings, all project contract documents, financial records, and supporting documents.

Financial Information

Account Identification

69-1134-0-1-401; 69-8350-0-7-401.


Capital Investment Grants FY 07 est $2,089,825,532; FY 08 est $1,733,343,126; and FY 09 est $2,012,683,287 not yet available. Formula and Bus Grants FY 07 $2,638,128,990; FY 08 est $2,492,631,268; and FY 09 est $3,274,810,658 not available. Note: Since FY 2006 Fixed Guideway Modernization and Bus and Bus Facilities have be funded from FTA's Formula and Bus Grants account.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

Fixed Guideway Modernization In FY 2008 apportionments ranged from $108,589 to $439,275,949 with an average of $25,074,629. Bus and Bus Facilities in FY 2008 earmarks ranged from $43,472 to $6,467,000. New Starts in FY 2008 earmarks ranged from $294,000 to $210,700,000.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

Contact the FTA Regional Offices. See FTA Circular 9300.1A, "Capital Program: Grant Application Instructions," October 1, 1998.

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

See Appendix IV: Agency Regional and Local Office Addresses of the Catalog for a listing of the Federal Transit regional offices.

Headquarters Office

Federal Transit Administration, Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, S.E., Washington, DC 20590. FTA Office of Transit Programs, Henrika Buchanan-Smith (202) 366-2053.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

1. Major, non-recurring capital investments. 2. Congressional designation (Bus and New Starts) 3. Formula allocation (Fixed Guideway Modernization) 4. New Starts projects are subject to extensive rating and evaluation process and must have FTA approval before entering into the Preliminary Engineering and Final Design Phases.

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