Transportation Alternatives Program

About the TA Program

The Transportation Alternatives (TA) Program is a competitive federal grant program that funds projects which:

  • enhance active transportation systems,
  • construct wayside rest areas for motorists,
  • support transportation-related community improvements,
  • mitigate environmental harm in transportation rights-of-way,
  • further Safe Routes to School programs, and
  • develop multi-modal surface transportation corridors.

In Northeast Minnesota, applicants may apply for between $100,000 and $600,000 to cover 80% of their proposed project costs; state or local funding must provide a 20% match. The grant solicitation opens annually each September, with letters of intent due in October and full applications due the following January. Projects must be completed within four years after being awarded to have eligible project expenses reimbursed.


Materials for the 2017-18 grant solicitation are available below. Letters of intent to apply were due October 31, 2017, and full applications are due January 12, 2018.


2017 (Programmed to Receive Funds in Fiscal Year 2021)

  • Deer River Trail:  Itasca County will receive $300,000 in federal funding to construct a paved trail designated for non-motorized use and making several connections within the cities of Deer River and Zemple.
  • Gitchi-Gami State Trail – Lutsen Segment:  The Minnesota Department of Transportation will receive $600,000 in federal funding to construct a 1.55-mile segment of the Gitchi-Gami State Trail connecting residences, employment opportunities, and key tourism destinations in the Lutsen community.

2016 (Programmed to Receive Funds in Fiscal Year 2020)

  • Mesabi Trail – St. Louis County Road 88 to Ely:  The St. Louis and Lake Counties Regional Railroad Authority will receive $300,000 in federal funding to construct a 3-mile-long segment of the Mesabi Trail making connection into the City of Ely.
  • Brighton Beach Shared Use Path:  The City of Duluth will receive $300,000 in federal funding to construct a non-motorized, multi-use path through Brighton Beach Park to connect bicycle lanes on North Shore Scenic Drive with the Lakewalk as part of the development of a bicycle commuter trail the length of the City of Duluth.
  • Grand Rapids Corridor Improvement Project:  The City of Grand Rapids will receive $300,000 in federal funding to improve pedestrian and bicycle connections between the cities of Grand Rapids and Cohasset with a non-motorized trail along U.S. Highway 2/NW 4th Street.

2015 (Programmed to Receive Funds in Fiscal Year 2019)

  • Highway 61 Redesign in Grand Marais:  The City of Grand Marais will receive $600,000 in federal funding to build continuous pedestrian and bicycle facilities, making necessary storm water improvements, along the Highway 61 corridor through Grand Marais.
  • St. Louis River Trail – Phase II:  The City of Scanlon will receive $300,000 in federal funding to construct a paved, non-motorized trail as an extension of the St. Louis River Trail through Scanlon’s community corridor, making connections to local businesses and connecting users to Scanlon River Park.

About the TA Task Force

The Transportation Alternatives (TA) Task Force is a task force of the ATP which meets to score and rank regional applications for TA funding each February.


The TA Task Force consists of thirteen (13) members. Visit the membership page to access a list of current members.