Highway Research and Development Program
|Authorization||$ 115 M||$ 115 M|
The Highway Research and Development Program funds strategic investment in research activities that address current and emerging highway transportation needs.
Statutory citation(s): MAP-21 §§ 52001-52003, 23 USC 502-503
Funded by contract authority from the Highway Account of the Highway Trust Fund. Funds are available until expended. The funds may not be transferred except that, at the request of a State, the Secretary may transfer funds apportioned or allocated to that State to another State or to FHWA to fund research, development and technology transfer activities of mutual interest on a pooled fund basis. Funds are subject to the overall Federal-aid obligation limitation and the obligation limitation associated with these funds is available for four fiscal years.
A broad range of research and development areas are eligible including:
- Improving highway safety – utilizing research and development activities from an integrated perspective to establish and implement systematic measures that improve highway safety;
- Improving infrastructure integrity – utilizing research and development activities to maintain infrastructure integrity, meet user needs, and link Federal transportation investments to improvements in system performance;
- Strengthening transportation planning and environmental decisionmaking – utilizing research to both minimize the cost of and improve transportation planning and environmental decisionmaking processes and minimize the potential impact of surface transportation on the environment;
- Reducing congestion, improving highway operations, and enhancing freight productivity – utilizing research to address congestion problems, reduce the cost of congestion, improve freight movement, and increase productivity and improve the economic competitiveness of the United States;
- Exploratory advanced research – utilizing research and development activities to leverage the capabilities of the Turner-Fairbank Research Center to develop technologies and innovations of national importance, and to develop potentially transformational solutions to improve the durability, efficiency, environmental impact, productivity, and safety of highway and intermodal transportation systems;
- Operation of the Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center –continued operation of the Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center; and
- Infrastructure investment needs report – a report that provides estimates of the future highway and bridge needs and the backlog of current highway and bridge needs. The Secretary will submit the report to the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee no later than July 31, 2013 and July 31st of every second year thereafter.
To the maximum extent practicable, research activities shall be part of a data-driven, outcome-based plan, and shall be consistent with the Secretary's research and technology development strategic plan.
The Federal share of the cost of activities carried out under a cooperative research and development agreement shall not exceed 80 %, except that if there is substantial public interest or benefit, the Secretary may approve a greater Federal share.
The Federal share of a project or activity carried out under this program shall be 80% unless otherwise determined by the Secretary.