There’s no doubt the $1.2 trillion federal infrastructure law has enormous potential to reshape the Atlanta region by providing better transportation options, addressing climate change, and improving equity.
But it’s an incredibly complex piece of legislation. The executive summary alone runs more than 400 pages.
And significant hurdles must be overcome:
- A sizeable portion of the funds is discretionary, meaning jurisdictions must compete for grants with peers in Georgia and nationwide.
- And most transportation projects require a local match of 20% or more.
To help local officials better understand the legislation and maximize available funding, the Atlanta Regional Commission is leading a comprehensive education and outreach effort. Here’s an overview:
Infrastructure Web Resources
ARC has developed a comprehensive resource on its website to house critical news and information related to the infrastructure law. This includes:
- An overview of the legislation and links to relevant resources
- News and information, updated regularly, including the release of new funding opportunities and deadlines for applications.
- A customized, interactive search tool designed to make it easy for officials to explore meaningful grant opportunities.
Infrastructure Webinar Series
With legislative as complex as this, and so much at stake, ARC is launching a series of informational webinars to help local officials, planners, and decision-makers understand how to make the most of the new funding opportunities.
The first webinar, IIJA 101: Navigating the Infrastructure Law and Transportation Funding Options, was presented on June 10.
ConnectATL Summit – Infrastructure Focus
ARC is once again hosting a ConnectATL Summit on the future of transportation, in conjunction with GDOT, on August 23 at the Georgia Tech Conference Center, providing an opportunity for local government officials, transportation planners, and other decision-makers to take a deep dive into the infrastructure law and explore the rapidly changing transportation technology landscape.
An exciting, daylong event is planned, featuring robust panel discussions with leading local and national experts, hands-on workshops, and exhibits of the latest technology.
Local Government Outreach
Sometimes, the best way to connect is old school. ARC leaders and subject matter experts are embarking on a series of in-person meetings with local elected officials, planners, and other stakeholders to discuss the infrastructure law, answer questions, and drive home the importance of taking action.
Anticipating a huge infusion of infrastructure investment to come in the next few years, one challenge has emerged: Finding the skilled construction workers needed to handle all the new work. After all, local agencies say they are having trouble filling the jobs they have now.
ARC is working with other regional workforce agencies on a comprehensive plan to create a more robust pipeline for construction-related jobs. This effort is in the early stages, so stay tuned for updates.
What’s Next ATL, produced by the Atlanta Regional Commission, is a community resource that explores how metro Atlanta is growing and changing, and how the region is addressing its most pressing challenges.