Projects of National and Regional Significance

Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) funds surface transportation programs at over $105 billion for fiscal year (FY) 2013-2014. MAP-21 is the first long-term highway authorization enacted in 2005 and represents a milestone for the country’s economy.

MAP-21 authorizes $500 million from the General Fund in FY 2013 only to fund Projects of National and Regional Significance (PNRS). PNRS eligible projects are critical high-cost surface transportation capital infrastructure improvements that will accomplish national goals, such as generating national/regional economic benefits, improving safety, proving more efficient movement of people and goods throughout the United States, and to improve the health and welfare of the national economy.

The PNRS program is critical to securing an efficient and reliable national freight system.  As the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) develops its survey on PNRS, CAPA maintains the following principles and recommends the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT):

Encourage states to take a “bottoms up” approach, including consultation with metropolitan planning organizations and port authorities –

  • This can be modeled after a successful approach used in California whereby priorities were established and projects selected in collaboration with local agencies and organizations.

Consider identifying critical gateways and corridors, connected by the National Freight Network, in which PNRS would be located, and used as the basis for selecting the highest priority PNRS –

Give added consideration to projects previously designated PNRS under SAFETEA-LU –

Encourage inclusion of PNRS in national freight planning efforts –

  • This includes consideration of PNRS in deliberations underway by the U.S. DOT Freight Policy Council and the National Freight Advisory Committee (NFAC).