On November 15, President Joe Biden signed the much-anticipated Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act – a $1.2 trillion bill passed by the Senate in August with bipartisan support. The bill is being touted as a “generational investment in America’s infrastructure,” with $550 billion going towards improving roads and bridges, removing lead water pipelines, and expanding broadband accessibility.
More than half of the money is allocated for transportation-focused projects, with $283.8 billion dedicated to roads, bridges and major projects; airports; low-carbon and zero-emission school buses and ferries; passenger and freight trail; ports and waterways; electric vehicle charging; public transit; safety and research; and reconnecting communities.
Going Big on Going Green
The legislation provides $15 billion for the electrification of “everyday transportation,” like the expansion of the electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) charger network and low-to-zero emission school buses.
Vision Zero Gets a Big Boost
Included in the final law is “Safe Streets for All” legislation, which will provide $6 billion in funding for Vision Zero – including funding for partnerships between private and governmental entities. The following provisions describe what can be funded under the programs:
- Complete street projects that support safe, convenient, independent movement of all users in the transportation system
- Activities eligible under the Safe Routes to School program
- Development and implementation of policies or procedures for context sensitive design
- Any element of Vision Zero planning or implementation of the existing Vision Zero plan
- Activities in furtherance of the vulnerable road user safety assessment of the State or metropolitan planning organization
- Any other project, program, or plan that provides safe and adequate accommodation of all users of the surface transportation network, as determined by the Secretary of Transportation
New and Expanded Grant Program Funding
Funds for the U.S. Department of Transportation and other federal agency grant programs are expected to be deployed at different times. Formula funds are expected to flow to states within six months of the bill being signed. Grant programs already in existence should also receive funds within six months, while new grant programs will likely receive funds within 12 months.
New Requirements for Limousines
In addition to a significant cash infusion, the infrastructure bill also includes a handful of new safety requirements for limousines.
Source: Windels Marx