The Futures Institute

Safe Streets and Roads for All

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The Safe Streets and Roads for All Grant Program

About

This grant supports the development or update of (1) a comprehensive safety action plan and (2) the implementation of the action plan (there are two types of SS4A grants: Action Plan Grants and Implementation Grants). The grant funds can help create safe routes to school and public transit services via multiple activities that lead to people safely walking, biking, and rolling in underserved communities. The grant also supports transforming a roadway corridor on a High-Injury Network into a Complete Street with safety improvements that control speed, separate users, and improve visibility, along with other measures that improve safety for all users

Eligible Uses

There are a wide variety of allowable uses for both planning and implementation grants including contruction costs, data collection, testing of action plan concepts, and conducting supplemental racial and health equity analysis. See the DOT website for more information. 

Grant Award

Planning grants: 

Minimum: $200,000

Maximum:  $5,000,000

Implementation grants: 

Minimum: $5,000,000

Maximum:  $50,000,000

Eligible
Recipients

Metropolitan planning organizations, counties, cities, towns, and transit agencies or other special districts that are subdivisions of a state, Native American tribal governments, and multi-jurisdictional groups

Restrictions

The Federal share of a SS4A grant may not exceed 80 percent of total eligible activity costs.  

Due Date

The first round closed on September 15, 2022. The FY 2023 notice is expected to open in spring 2023.

Agency

The Department of Transportation 

Materials Needed

Unknown

Application Difficulty

Unknown

Evidence on Investments in Built Design

Over the years, research has shown that basic investments in built design—in streetlights, parks, road design, public transportation, and addressing vacant lots—has significant implications for community safety. Decades of criminology research has found a link between built design and residents’ safety. This growing body of literature should influence how urban planners and local policymakers leverage our most basic resource: the design of our physical space.

Overall, the design of urban spaces has been shown to have crime-reducing effects. Recent studies in multiple jurisdictions, including PhiladelphiaBaltimore, and Youngstown, have found that maintaining green space reduces certain types of crime. A rigorous study found that restoring vacant land in cities significantly improves both local residents’ perception of their safety, as well as their actual physical safety. Restoration projects produced large reductions in crime, including a 30 percent reduction in gun violence. Increasing public transportation options for residents has a direct effect on economic opportunities, while reducing certain types of crime, and reducing traffic congestion may lower rates of domestic violence in areas with high congestion. In New York City, research demonstrated that streetlights can reduce “index crimes”—including murder, robbery, aggravated assault, and some property crimes—by more than a third. And improving streets and sidewalks so that they enhance pedestrian safety has been shown to reduce crime. 

In short, the evidence makes clear that by carefully considering our physical space and letting community members drive improvements that they feel to keep them safe, we can make significant progress toward reducing violence and other harms. 

Grant Writing Resources

Grants.Gov Resources

Applicant Training Videos (step-by-step guide on how to find grants, set up an account on grants.gov, and submit an application)

Applicant FAQ page

Other Resources

Community Toolbox’s Applying For Grants Toolkit (Outline of process + example applications)

FAQs

Q: What is community safety? 

A: We use the term “community safety” as well as “non-carceral safety” to indicate an approach to reducing violence and harm that invests in people over punishment. This can include unarmed civilian first responders and community violence prevention, but must also center preventative and root-caused focused solutions such as investments in schools, healthcare, and the environment. These solutions not only create holistic safety by improving well-being, they have been directly tied to reductions in violence. 

Q: How do the grants in the American Rescue Plan and other recent bills fit into this database? 

A: This database contains grants contained both in specific legislation (like the American Rescue Plan Act, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs act, and the Inflation Reduction act) but it focuses primarily on grants funded annually through the federal budget process. Please see our resources specifically on ARPA and IIJA for more information on funding opportunities in those bills. 

Q: Where should I go if I have additional questions? 

A: Feel free to reach out to samwashington@civilrightscorps.org with questions or comments. If you’d like to suggest a grant, please fill out this form

 

Insights from Grant Recipients
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