MTC distributes money to Bay Area transit agencies from many different sources, including the Federal Transit Administration.
Among the funding tools MTC uses to help modernize our region’s transit network are the FTA’s Section 5303, Section 5307, Section 5309, Section 5310 and Section 5311 programs.
The FTA distributes Section 5303 Metropolitan Planning Program funds to regions based on both population and an agency formula. More than 20 Bay Area transit agencies request Section 5303 funds to help finance development of their Short Range Transit Plans.
The FTA Section 5307 Urbanized Area Formula Funding program can be used to finance up to 80 percent of project costs for a wide range of transit investments, including:
- Operating assistance
- Construction of maintenance and passenger facilities
- Vehicle replacement and rehabilitation
- Rehabilitation of tracks, signals, communications and computer systems
- Planning, engineering design and project evaluation
- Crime prevention and security equipment
Funding through the Section 5307 is based on formulas established by Congress that incorporate population, transit ridership, revenue-service mileage and other factors. Section 5307 funds can be used to cover up to 90 percent of costs for bicycle-related projects and investments to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Clean Air Act.
FTA Section 5309 Capital Investment Grants are earmarked by Congress. These include:
- New Starts grants of $75 million or more
- Small Starts grants up to $75 million
- Core Capacity grants to expand capacity on existing transit systems
Get the facts, the details, and info on eligible projects when you download FTA's overview.
Section 5310 Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities funds are distributed to states to provide grants for nonprofit agencies that provide transportation services to the elderly or people with disabilities. Applicants may seek funding through a Call for Projects open through March 1, 2017.
The FTA’s Section 5311 Formula Grants for Rural Areas program provides funds for both transit capital projects and transit operations in non-urbanized areas.
There are eligible communities in every Bay Area county except San Francisco.
To determine if your area is eligible for FTA 5311, download this map of large and small urbanized areas.
Caltrans' Division of Mass Transportation is soliciting projects for the FTA's Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities Program (Section 5310). This program aims to improve mobility for seniors and people with disabilities by removing barriers to transportation services and expanding available mobility options.
Applications are due by Wednesday, March 1, 2017 at 5 p.m.
Eligible activities include:
- Traditional Capital Projects: At least 55 percent of available funding is set aside for "traditional" projects such as mobility management programs, vehicles or other equipment, including communications gear; computer hardware and wheelchair restraints.
- Expanded Projects: Up to 45 percent of available funding may be used for projects formerly eligible under the FTA's New Freedom Program. These projects provide services beyond minimum ADA requirements, improve access to fixed-route transit service, decrease reliance on paratransit, or provide alternatives to public transit.
For more information, MTC invites you to refer to:
- Call for Projects--Letter to Eligible Applicants
- Call for Projects for FY 2015, 2016 and 2017 Apportionments
- Eligible Projects
- Bay Area's Coordinated Public Transit-Human Services Plan (2013)
- Urbanized Area Map for San Francisco Bay Region (2010)
- Contact List for MTC, Caltrans and County Paratransit Coordinating Council staff
- Caltrans' Section 5310 website
- Caltrans' Section 5310 Fact Sheet
Two major Bay Area transit projects are advancing with New Starts funding from the FTA’s Section 5309 Capital Investment Grants program:
- San Francisco Muni Central Subway
- BART Silicon Valley Extension — Warm Springs to Berryessa (East San Jose)
Bay Area bus rapid transit projects are getting a boost with Small Starts grants from the FTA. These include:
- AC Transit Bus Rapid Transit — Oakland to San Leandro
- San Francisco Muni Van Ness Avenue Bus Rapid Transit