National Culvert Removal, Replacement & Restoration Grants
The National Culvert Removal, Replacement, and Restoration Grant Program (Culvert Aquatic Organism Passage (AOP) Program) is an annual competitive grant program that awards grants to eligible entities for projects for the replacement, removal, and repair of culverts or weirs that meaningfully improve or restore fish passage for anadromous fish. Anadromous fish species are born in freshwater such as streams and rivers, spend most of their lives in the marine environment, and migrate back to freshwater to spawn.
Who is eligible to apply?
Eligible entities for the Culvert AOP Program include Tribes, States, and units of local government.
What kinds of projects are eligible?
The Culvert AOP Program focuses on two project categories as differentiated by structure type:
- Projects to replace, remove, or repair culverts that would meaningfully improve or restore fish passage for anadromous fish.
- Projects to replace, remove, or repair weirs that would meaningfully improve or restore fish passage for anadromous fish. With respect to weirs, the project may include: 1) infrastructure to facilitate fish passage around or over the weir; and 2) weir improvements.
The following types of projects will be prioritized for Culvert AOP Program funding:
- Projects that would improve fish passage for:
- Anadromous fish stocks listed as an endangered species or a threatened species under section 4 of the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. § 1533);
- Anadromous fish stocks identified by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) or the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) that could reasonably become listed as an endangered species or a threatened species under that section;
- Anadromous fish stocks identified by the NMFS or USFWS as prey for endangered species, threatened species, or protected species, including Southern resident orcas (Orcinus orcas); or
- Anadromous fish stocks identified by the NMFS or the USFWS as climate resilient stocks; and
- Projects that would open up more than 200 meters of upstream anadromous habitat before the end of the natural habitat
DOT uses Grants.gov for receipt of all applications for this program's Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO). Applicants must register and use the system to submit applications electronically. Applicants are encouraged to register in advance of the submission deadline and to register to receive notifications of updates/amendments to this NOFO. Approval of user registrations for the site may take multiple weeks. It is the Applicant's responsibility to monitor Grants.gov for any updates to this Notice.
The deadline for FY 2022 funding applications was February 6, 2023.
This FHWA website DOES NOT accept any applications.
Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO)
- Culvert AOP Application Template (this is NOT the application)
- DOT Navigator - Grant Application Resources
- FHWA Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Website
- USDOT Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Website
Webinar #3: National Culvert Removal, Replacement, and Restoration Grants: General Overview
12/14/2022 2:00 to 3:30 p.m. ET
The Culvert AOP Program will post additional resources as they become available
- Culvert AOP Program Questions and Answers (coming soon)
U.S Fish and Wildlife Service
National Marine Fisheries Service
- NMFS - monitoring and evaluation of restoration projects
- NMFS - west coast anadromous fish passage guidelines
U.S. Forest Service
- Stream Simulation: An Ecological Approach to Providing Passage for Aquatic Organisms at Road-Stream Crossings
Training, Videos & Presentations
- National Highway Institute Course 135096 Roadway Interactions with Rivers and Floodplains: Basic Concepts
- Hydraulic Engineering: Open-Channel Flow and Culvert Hydraulics Demonstration Series
- National Highway Institute Course 135094 Culvert Hydraulic Analysis and Design Program (HY-8) Web-Based
- Hydraulic Engineering Field Scoping Videos
Other funding opportunities
While Congress created the Culvert AOP program solely to address anadromous species, the FHWA recognizes that many other species exist and would benefit from a wider set of AOP locations. For additional culvert or fish passage federal assistance you may refer to other programs including, but not limited to the following: