Making the most of the Corridor ID Program

Issue in Brief

The Corridor ID Program is a great new tool.

The Corridor Identification Program is a new program managed by the Federal Railroad Administration.  It will be the pathway to Federal financial support and technical assistance for new or improved intercity passenger rail routes across the country.

It offers a low risk way for local governments and states to start planning for fast, frequent and affordable trains as states develop their rail programs.

Why it is Important

It is the tool that the FRA will use to prioritize how federal intercity passenger rail funds are spent.  The project pipeline will help Congress to decide how much funding to give intercity passenger rail.

Our Goal

It is important that applications for as many corridors as possible are submitted so that Congress will see the demand.

More Insights

Notice of Solicitation of Corridor Proposals and Funding Opportunity

The official notice of funding opportunity gives instructions on who can apply for funds and how.  Applications are due March 27, 2023.  There will be another round next year.

Corridor ID Summary PDF

HDR Inc., an Alliance Corporate Partner, prepared an excellent summary pdf.

Watch our overview webinar

Gain a better understanding of how the Corridor ID program works. Whether your local project is just getting started or pursuing funds to begin construction, this program can help move your project forward.

How Corridor ID relates to other federal programs.

Corridor ID helps project sponsors, like a state or a metropolitan planning organization, make their project ready for other federal funding programs. The biggest funding program is the Federal-State Partnership for Intercity Passenger Rail.

A diagram showing the steps in developing an intercity rail project. 1) Systems Planning 2) Project Planning 3) Development 4) Final Design 5) Construction 6) Operaation

The Goals of the Corridor ID Program

  • Support a sustained long-term development effort.
  • Create a capital project pipeline ready for Federal (and other) funding.
  • Become the primary means for directing Federal financial support and technical assistance for new or improved intercity passenger rail services throughout the United States.

Eligible Applicants

  • Amtrak
  • States
  • Groups of States
  • Entities implementing interstate compacts
  • Regional passenger rail authorities
  • Regional planning organizations
  • Political subdivisions of a State
  • Federally recognized Indian Tribes

Eligible Corridors

  • New routes under 750 miles (except commuter rail)
  • Existing routes under 750 miles (except commuter rail)
  • Existing inter-regional (long-distance) routes
  • Inter-regional routes discontinued by Amtrak
  • Inter-regional routes operating on April 30, 1971

Steps in the Corridor ID process

The process is broken into 3 steps.  The first step comes at no cost to the project sponsor, so it is a low risk way to better understand the costs and benefits of the corridor.  The sponsor is not obligated to move into the following steps.

Step 1

Creating the scope, schedule, and cost estimate for preparing a service development plan.

Award amount: $500,000

Local share: 0%

Step 2

Develop the Service Development Plan

Award amount: TBD

Local share: 10%

Step 3

Final design and environmental review

Award amount: TBD

Local share: 20%

What you can do

Make sure that your local leaders know that they can use the Corridor ID program to build the case for trains to their town.

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