oregon community paths program

ODOT says new Community Paths grant program could dish out over $19 million

Avatar by on August 6th, 2020 at 12:59 pm

Fanno Creek Trail near Oleson Road.
(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

The Oregon Department of Transportation has taken the wraps off a new program that will fund off-street path projects across the state.

The Oregon Community Paths program was first announced in February and ODOT has just released more details. Program manager Alan Thompson said he thinks there could be around $19.2 million up for grabs between federal and state sources through 2024, although that amount is “in flux” (likely a reference to ODOT’s pandemic-related budget crunch).

ODOT will pull together four funding sources — one from the federal government, three from the State of Oregon — to help plan and construct paths that are not on the roadway right-of-way. That stipulation is important because Highway Trust Fund, gas tax, and nearly every other major revenue source is legally required to be spent in the right-of-way. [Read more…]

Your bike tax at work: State of Oregon unveils new ‘Community Paths’ grant program

Avatar by on February 3rd, 2020 at 12:52 pm

Paths like the Tualatin River Greenway are good examples of projects that could be funded from the new program.
(Photo: City of Tualatin)

Here’s what the State of Oregon is doing with that tax you pay on the purchase of new bicycles: The Oregon Department of Transportation has just launched a new program that could provide an estimated $14 million to multi-use path projects statewide.

The Oregon Community Paths program is the evolution of the active transportation portion of the state’s Connect Oregon (Lottery-backed) program. When the legislature passed a transportation funding bill in 2017 (HB 2017) they shifted the 7% of Connect Oregon that went to bicycling and walking projects into a separate program named the Multimodal Active Transportation Fund. That fund now also includes revenue from the bicycle excise tax that went into effect in fall 2017 and the federal Transportation Alternatives program.

According to ODOT Tourism and Scenic Byway Program Manager Sandra Hikari the Community Path Fund will start awarding grants in 2021. The $14 million estimate is for a three-year grant cycle ending in 2024. Asked for examples of projects that will compete well for the funds, she pointed to the Bear Creek Greenway in southern Oregon and the Tualatin River Greenway in Washington County. [Read more…]