Wednesday, March 07, 2012

DVRPC Announces Competitive Round Of Funding For Air Quality And Congestion Projects

For the first time in six years, the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission has announced a competitive round of funding for the construction and completion of bike, pedestrian, transit, and other projects aimed at improving air quality in the region.

DVRPC has allocated $10.6 million for this round; $8m is available for Pennsylvania and $2.6m for New Jersey. Transportation authorities, local governments and non-profits who partner with those organizations are eligible to apply for the funds.

The money is Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Funds, or "CMAQ," a large pot of federal funds that can be used to pay for a range of projects that reduce congestion and air pollution. DVRPC puts aside a small portion of their CMAQ dollars for this competitive process (much more money goes to agencies like SEPTA and NJDOT). The last time DVRPC offered a competitive round of CMAQ funding was 2005.

The CMAQ eligibility process requires some math to calculate the benefits of each project. Fortunately DVRPC has set up a helpful web page along with a healthy lead time to complete applications. All program information is available at

Examples of past bike/ped projects that have received CMAQ funding include:
  • Bike Racks on SEPTA buses
  • Chester Valley Trail, Schuylkill River Trail, Cobbs Creek Bikeway
  • Adopt A Rack
  • Regional Bicycle Mobility Map
Here's to hoping that this leads to some terrific new bicycling infrastructure projects in our region.