DRPT provides grants to local governments, transit agencies, Transportation Management Associations, Planning District Commissions, and Metropolitan Planning Organizations for operating Commuter Programs and Transportation Demand Management (TDM) programs and projects.
These grants fund programs and projects that help commuters and travelers with their transportation choices and decisions, address traffic congestion, improve air quality and help regions meet their air quality goals and requirements. These programs also help Virginia’s transportation system operate more efficiently by moving more people without increasing congestion by increasing vehicle occupancy, eliminating single occupant vehicle trips, increasing transit ridership, shifting trips from peak to off-peak periods, and reducing vehicle miles traveled.
Examples of Commuter Programs/TDM include:
- Ridematching services that match commuters and travelers in carpools, vanpools, and transit options
- Guaranteed/Emergency Ride Home programs to help commuters get home when they carpool, vanpool, or use transit to work and they have to unexpectedly leave early or work late
- Marketing and promotion of TDM and travel options to residents, commuters, employers, and employees
- Telework program assistance and promotion
- Employer outreach and transit/vanpool benefit development assistance
- Vanpool formation, start-up, and operation assistance
Grants are awarded through a competitive application process. DRPT’s Program Application Guidance document details all of DRPT’s grant programs, eligible recipients, and eligible projects and expenses. Grant awards are included in DRPT’s Six-Year Improvement Program (SYIP) which is reviewed and approved by the Commonwealth Transportation Board.
The following is a general timeline for commuter services grants.
DRPT announces the opening of the annual grant application period.
February 1 or First Business Day in February
Applications are due for Public Transportation, Commuter Services/TDM and FTA Section 5310 and 5311 programs.
DRPT evaluates applications and requests any additional information needed from applicants. Late April Applications are due for FTA Section 5303 funds.
DRPT completes application evaluation and develops the draft Six-Year Improvement Program (SYIP) which contains funding for public transportation and commuter services programs and services. The SYIP includes funding for transit operating and capital and TDM program operating and projects.
The Commonwealth Transportation Board adopts the Six-Year Improvement Program. DRPT notifies applicants of approved grants and funding levels. July 1 Fiscal Year begins – contracts executed.