COLUMBIA FALLS, MT — U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg announces that the Biden-Harris Administration has awarded $41 million to support four projects in Montana from the Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) program to help move forward on projects that modernize roads, bridges, transit, rail, ports, and intermodal transportation and make the transportation systems safer, more accessible, more affordable, and more sustainable. This year’s total allocations nationwide include more than $2.2 billion due to the President’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which provides an additional $7.5 billion over five years for the program to help meet the demand to help projects get moving across the country.
“We are proud to support so many outstanding infrastructure projects in communities large and small, modernizing America’s transportation systems to make them safer, more affordable, more accessible, and more sustainable,” Buttigieg said. “Using funds from President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, this year we are supporting more projects than ever before.”
Projects were evaluated on several criteria, including safety, environmental sustainability, quality of life, economic competitiveness and opportunity, partnership and collaboration, innovation, state of good repair, and mobility and community connectivity. Within these areas, the department considered how projects will improve accessibility for all travelers, bolster supply chain efficiency, and support racial equity and economic growth — especially in historically disadvantaged communities and areas of persistent poverty.
In Montana, the following projects will benefit from RAISE awards:
Columbia Falls Gateway to Glacier Safety and Mobility Improvement Project
The City of Columbia Falls will receive $10 million to fund the reconstruction of approximately 1.3 miles of roadway, approximately 1.7 miles of new sidewalks, and nearly one mile of buffered multi-use pathways, numerous intersections, parking, and ADA access improvements in the downtown region of Columbia Falls. The project improvements will help provide more safe, accessible transportation corridors, resulting in reduced emissions. The project will benefit the community, including seniors, people with disabilities, and school-aged children. The project will also promote energy efficiencies with the replacement of aging, leaking water mains.
Chippewa Cree Tribe Route 6 Planning Grant
The Chippewa Cree Tribe will receive $2.1 million for this planning project that will fund a Corridor Planning Study to evaluate BIA Route 6 on Rocky Boy’s Reservation. The project seeks to improve safety and reduce the likelihood of vehicle crashes and slide offs by upgrading the condition of the current asphalt, which has significant surface and subgrade deterioration. The project sponsor will be collaborating with the Bureau of Indian Affairs Tribal Transportation Program system, which governs all planning and relevant Tribal responsibilities for all Reservation roads, among other partners.
Lake County Road Reconstruction
Lake County will receive $12.9 million to reconstruct and pave Dublin Gulch and North Reservoir Roads in their entirety as well as approximately 1.3 miles of Lower Moise Valley Road. This project will improve environmental sustainability by improving groundwater and surface water quality that is used for irrigation. The project also provides the opportunity to install solar mounts to connect to nearby solar installations. The project will facilitate emergency response, as well as provide more reliable and timely access to jobs and essential services. The creation of a bike lane will improve mobility and connectivity by linking US 93 and MT 564 with a cycling route between the communities.
Northern Cheyenne Rosebud Cut-Across US 212 to MT 39
The Northern Cheyenne Tribe will receive $15.8 million to reconstruct approximately 3.1 miles of existing gravel road on the Rosebud Cut-Across to include a two-lane paved route with two-foot shoulders, geometric improvements, safety enhancements, improved signage, and a separated multimodal pedestrian and bicycle pathway. The project will improve safe transportation infrastructure for travelers between the communities on the Reservation and provide better access for emergency response vehicles. The project will improve the overall air quality for communities and address negative environmental impacts of transportation by alleviating vehicle congestion during seasonal and crash-related closures. The project will increase affordable transportation choices and help modernize core infrastructure in the area.
Buttigieg and other senior U.S Department of Transportation officials will fan out across the country to visit additional sites that are receiving RAISE awards to highlight the ways that the President’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is helping invest in communities and get infrastructure projects moving in communities large and small.