Lifeline Transportation Program

MTC’s Lifeline Transportation Program funds projects that advance mobility and accessibility in low-income communities.

Noah Berger

Through the Lifeline Transportation Program, MTC works with county transportation agencies to establish better service for communities that rely on public transit.

MTC taps both state and federal funds to provide Lifeline grants for projects that meet mobility and accessibility needs in Equity Priority Communities across the Bay Area.

Project types include:

  • Fixed-route bus service
  • Transit stop improvements
  • Pedestrian and bicycle access improvements
  • Transportation services for seniors and children
  • Community shuttles
  • Auto loan programs
  • Participatory budgeting pilots
  • Regional means-based transit discount program (Clipper® Start)

MTC allocated some $285 million for grants to over 300 projects during the first six cycles of the Lifeline Transportation Program.

Community-Based Transportation Plans

The Lifeline Transportation Program is a primary source of funding for projects listed in Community-Based Transportation Plans (CBTPs). The CBTP program takes a grass-roots approach to addressing transportation issues facing low-income communities around the Bay. 


See completed Community-Based Transportation Plans.
County Mobility Managers

You have questions about how to find and qualify for accessible transportation. Your county’s Mobility Manager has answers.

Get transportation assistance.
Community Action Resource & Empowerment (CARE) Program

CARE is a funding program to develop equity-based partnerships and provide resources and support in the Bay Area.

Learn about the CARE Program.
Advancing Equity

The Lifeline Transportation Program is part of MTC's commitment to advance and deliver transportation options for all Bay Area residents. We especially focus on the needs of low-income people of color, because they face disproportionate barriers when it comes to access to jobs, health, housing, education and civic participation.

Learn about MTC's Equity Platform.

MTC establishes new guidelines for each cycle of the Lifeline Transportation Program. But the goal is the same: fund community-based transportation projects developed through a collaborative and inclusive process.

Lifeline projects must address transportation gaps or barriers identified in community-based transportation plans or other local planning efforts in low-income neighborhoods.


The Bay Area’s nine county transportation agencies (CTAs) administer the Lifeline Transportation Program.

This includes determining the eligibility of grant proposals and appointing local review teams to evaluate them. CTAs also guide MTC’s Community-Based Transportation Planning Program.

Lifeline Transportation Program-funded initiatives are made possible through partnerships with transit agencies, social service and health entities, community-based organizations and non-profits.

The Region’s Blueprint

Projects funded by the Lifeline Transportation Program are also listed in the region’s four-year Coordinated Public Transit-Human Services Transportation Plan, the region’s blueprint for serving seniors, people with lower incomes and people with disabilities.