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Transportation Alternatives Program


The Transportation Alternatives Set-Aside (TA or TA Set-Aside) has had many iterations since its original creation under the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) in 2012. Under MAP-21, the TA Set-Aside was known as the Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP) and with the addition of TAP into the MAP-21 legislation, funding sources such as the Safe Routes to Schools, Recreational Trails Program, Transportation Enhancements, and other related federal funding sources were consolidated under the TAP umbrella.

Currently, under the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act of 2015 (FAST Act), the Transportation Alternatives Program was again replaced as a set aside under the Surface Transportation Block Grant (STBG). Due to the successive enactment of MAP-21 and the FAST Act, many jurisdictions responsible for dispersing TA funds still refer to the set aside as TAP or other archived designations. For clarity, the acting Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) – which is the Columbus-Phenix City Metropolitan Planning Organization (C-PCMPO), will refer to the funds described in this document as the Transportation Alternatives Set-Aside or TA, for short.


Eligible Projects

Under the TA Set-Aside, there are 10 activities in which the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has determined are eligible for TA fund dispersal. The 10 eligible activities go as follows:

i. Construction, planning, and design of on-road and off-road trail facilities for pedestrians, bicyclists, and other nonmotorized forms of transportation, including sidewalks, bicycle infrastructure, pedestrian and bicycle signals, traffic calming techniques, lighting and other safety-related infrastructure, and transportation projects to achieve compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 12101 et seq.).

ii. Construction, planning, and design of infrastructure-related projects and systems that will provide safe routes for non-drivers, including children, older adults, and individuals with disabilities to access daily needs.

iii. Conversion and use of abandoned railroad corridors for trails for pedestrians, bicyclists, or other nonmotorized transportation users.

iv. Construction of turnouts, overlooks, and viewing areas.

v. Community improvement activities, which include but are not limited to:

  a. Inventory, control, or removal of outdoor advertising;
  b. Historic preservation and rehabilitation of historic transportation facilities;
  c. Vegetation management practices in transportation rights-of-way to improve roadway Safety, prevent against invasive species, and provide erosion control; and
  d. Archaeological activities relating to impacts from implementation of a transportation project eligible under title 23.

vi. Any environmental mitigation activity, including pollution prevention and pollution abatement activities and mitigation to:
  a. Address stormwater management, control, and water pollution prevention or abatement related to highway construction or due to highway runoff, including activities described in sections 23 U.S.C. 133(b)(3) [as amended under the FAST Act], 328(a), and 329 of title 23;
  b. Reduce vehicle-caused wildlife mortality or to restore and maintain connectivity among terrestrial or aquatic habitats (Former 23 U.S.C. 213(b)(2)-(4)).

vii. The recreational trails program under 23 U.S.C. 206 of title 23.

viii. The safe routes to school program eligible projects and activities listed at section 1404(f) of the SAFETEA-LU:
  a. Infrastructure related projects
  b. Non-infrastructure related projects
  c. Safe Routes to School (SRTS) coordinator. SAFETEA-LU section 1404(f)(2)(A) lists “managers of safe routes to school programs” as eligible under the non-infrastructure projects.

ix. Planning, designing, or constructing boulevards and other roadways largely in the right-of-way of former Interstate System routes or other divided highways.

x. Transportation projects that will be conducted and performed by youth workforce development, youth conservation corps, and other youth services, which can be defined under Section 1524 of the MAP-21 Act.

* CPCMPO is currently accepting applications for our region’s Transportation Alternatives program. Please read through the Transportation Alternatives: Instructional Guide for more information as to how to apply. The deadline for FY 2020 applications will be on August 8, 2019 at 11:59 PM. The Transportation Alternatives Set-Aside: Project Proposal Application Form will be in the Forms Section of this webpage. For more information, please contact Addie Britt by phone at 706-653-4116 or by email at