The City of Tampa has received a $1.75 million grant from the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) Build America Bureau to establish and operate a Regional Infrastructure Accelerator (RIA) office that will help move our region forward on major transportation projects and transit-oriented development.
With today’s announcement, Tampa joins state transportation departments, metropolitan planning organizations and regional transit authorities from across the nation as the first city to become a USDOT Regional Infrastructure Accelerator. Fort Lauderdale has also been named an RIA in today’s announcement.
“This is an important moment for our City and region when it comes to transportation infrastructure projects and transit-oriented development and puts us in a stronger position to finance critical improvements,” said Mayor Jane Castor. “I appreciate the support and commitment of the federal government in helping Tampa Bay move forward on building the transportation infrastructure we need to meet current and future demands.”
The purpose of the designation is to accelerate the development and delivery of transportation infrastructure. Starting with City of Tampa projects, the RIA will assist regional agencies in developing innovative financing packages that may include federal grants, public-private partnerships, Transportation Infrastructure loans, and special districts to fund capital and operating costs for fixed-guideway transit and other transportation infrastructure projects. It will also help the City create financing incentives for transit-oriented development along major corridors.
“Establishing a Regional Infrastructure Accelerator at the City of Tampa will play a key role in connecting our neighborhoods and region to jobs, businesses, and community,” said Mayor Castor. “It will also help redefine what development can look like when it’s centered around mass transit.”
Build America Bureau administers several funding programs that can be used to finance local matches for state and federal funding for transportation infrastructure projects.
RIA grant partners include the Florida Department of Transportation, the Hillsborough County Transportation Planning Organization (TPO), Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority (HART), the University of South Florida (USF), Brightline and the Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority- all agencies that may benefit from the RIA’s services. Once established, the RIA will serve these and other transportation agencies from across Tampa Bay.