Portman praises $100 million for smart transportation technology, spurs U.S. innovation and competitiveness

New SMART program delivered through Portman’s bipartisan infrastructure law

September 20, 2022


Press release

Washington DC –Today, U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) applauded the Department of Transportation’s announcement that it has begun accepting applications for the SMART Grants program, which is run by Portman’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, Signed into law last November. The program will provide approximately $100 million annually over the next five years to support projects that use technology to improve our transportation infrastructure.

“The SMART program will help spur innovation in the U.S. and lead to cutting-edge infrastructure projects,” Portman said. “This is just another resource for strengthening our nation’s infrastructure with my bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. I encourage everyone who is eligible to apply now so they can access this new funding.”

The new Enhancing Mobility and Transforming Transport (SMART) grants program will Grants of up to $100 million annually over the next five years will fund projects that use data and technology to address real-world challenges facing communities today. The SMART program will fund purpose-driven innovation and focus on building data and technology capabilities and expertise. The program seeks advice from public sector entities that will develop demonstration projects to address key transportation priorities in the following areas: Vehicle technologies, such as automation and connectivity; System innovations, such as delivery and logistics, traffic signals, smart grids and data integration; and new ways to monitor and manage infrastructure, such as sensors and drones. SMART Notification of Funding (NOFO) is open Now.

The SMART Grant program is modeled after Portman’s legislation with Senators Cortez Masto (D-NV), Burr (R-NC) and Sinema (D-AZ) to move and promote innovation to revolutionize smart transportation (Moving FIRST) . Launched in March 2021, Moving Priority Act Established a grant program that provides $100 million annually in grants to medium, large and rural communities that build on the success of the 2015 Smart City Challenge by leveraging technological innovations in transportation solutions.

The 2015 Smart City Challenge received 78 applications from 36 states. By asking U.S. cities to use emerging transportation technologies to solve their most pressing problems, the Smart Cities Challenge aims to inspire and spread innovation through a mixture of collaboration, competition, and experimentation.During the selection process, Portman urge Then-Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx awarded his Smart City Challenge to Columbus, Ohio, citing the city’s leadership in innovation and research, as well as its geographic fit.Finally, Columbus won $40 million in grants to develop smart technologies to improve jobs, drive economic growth, build cities’ leadership in logistics, and promote more sustainable transportation. Overall, the smart city grants helped leverage a total of $100 million in funding commitments and transportation upgrades in the capital.


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