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Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU)

Fact Sheets on Highway Provisions


Year 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Authorization $195 M $390 M $487M $487M $390 M

Program Purpose

A discretionary program that provides funding for construction of highway projects in corridors of national significance to promote economic growth and international or interregional trade. This program replaces TEA-21 section 1118, National Corridor Planning and Development program.

Statutory References

SAFETEA-LU Section(s): 1101(a)(10), 1302, 1935, 1936, 1953; 1102


Funded by contract authority, to remain available until expended. Funds are subject to the overall Federal-aid obligation limitation. Projects will receive special no year obligation limitation that is available until used. In addition, an unspecified amount of funding is authorized from the General Fund, which would require appropriation action to become available [1102, 1953]

Funding for projects will be awarded through a selection process conducted by the Secretary that:

  • requires States to submit an application
  • gives priority to projects in corridors that are part of, or will be part of, the Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defense Highways after completion, and to projects that will be completed within 5 years of allocation of funds for the project.

For each project designated in section 1302, the Secretary shall allocate a portion of the amount designated for that project: 10% in 2005, 20% for 2006, 25% for 2007, 25% for 2008 and 20% for 2009

The funds designated for a project in section 1302 are available only for that project with the following exception: Funds allocated for a project specified below may be obligated for any other of these projects in the same State:

  • High Priority Projects listed in section 1702 and numbered 3677 or higher;
  • Projects of National and Regional Significance listed in section 1301 and numbered 19 or higher;
  • National Corridor Infrastructure Improvement Program projects listed in section 1302 and numbered 28 or higher; or
  • Any Transportation Improvements project listed in section 1934;

except that the authorization for a project from the category list may not be reduced. [1935]

Corridor projects also may be advanced with funds apportioned under 23 U.S.C. 104(b) from a program under which the project would be eligible, and the funds are to be restored to that program from future allocations for the project. [1936]

In addition to the funding shown above for FY 2005, $140 M is provided for the National Corridor Planning and Development and Coordinated Border Infrastructure programs combined under sections 1118 and 1119 of TEA-21 to be administered under the terms of those sections. [1101(a)(19)]

Eligible Use of Funds

Highway construction projects in corridors of national significance will be selected with consideration of the extent to which:

  • the corridor links two existing segments of the Interstate System
  • the project facilitates major multi-state or regional mobility, economic growth, and development in areas underserved by highway infrastructure
  • commercial traffic in corridor has increased since enactment of NAFTA and where traffic is projected to increase in the future
  • international truck-borne commodities movement through the corridor
  • the project will reduce congestion on an existing segment of the Interstate
  • the project will reduce commercial and other travel time through a major freight corridor
  • Federal funds will be leveraged

and the value of the cargo carried by commercial vehicle traffic in the corridor and the economic costs arising from congestion in the corridor

Federal Share

The Federal share is generally 80 percent, subject to the sliding scale adjustment. When the funds are used for Interstate projects to add high occupancy vehicle or auxiliary lanes, but not other lanes, the Federal share may be 90 percent, also subject to the sliding scale adjustment. Certain safety improvements listed in 23 USC 120(c) have a Federal share of 100 percent.

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