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RCP Case Studies

San Francisco Bay Trail | Photo courtesy RTC

Reconnecting Communities FY22 Case Studies

The primary focus of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (USDOT’s) first round of Reconnecting Communities Pilot Program grants—announced on Feb. 28, 2023—is equitable access to economic opportunities. The most common centerpiece of the project grantees is the removal or redesign of transportation facilities that have divided neighborhoods—in some cases for many decades. Most of the awards include safe and convenient accommodations for pedestrians and bicyclists as essential parts of the solution to historic barriers to mobility and access. Many also include the creation or enhancement of parks and greenspaces that may be otherwise lacking. Additionally, many of the awards include secondary themes—most commonly improving safety for people walking, biking and taking transit, as well as addressing climate emissions—that reinforce the inclusion of trails, walking and biking as important mitigating strategies. The following project grantees demonstrate these themes and serve as important case studies for trails and active transportation.

Shoreline Drive Gateway

Project At A Glance

  • Submitted by: City of Long Beach, California
  • Location: City of Long Beach, California
  • Project Type: Capital
  • Urban/Rural: Urban
  • Estimated Total Project Cost: $69,174,000
  • Amount Awarded: $30 million
Shoemaker Bridge replacement and Shoreline Drive realignment projects | Courtesy of the City of Long Beach
Shoemaker Bridge replacement and Shoreline Drive realignment projects | Courtesy of the City of Long Beach

Long Beach, California, received $30 million to redesign West Shoreline Drive to increase safe access to the ocean, downtown and key destinations, with funding to create a new bike path and pedestrian amenities as well as a 5.5-acre park. West Shoreline Drive is a major barrier to community assets and is a safety hazard for those seeking to reach community park space, Downtown Long Beach and other nearby destinations. Northbound Shoreline Drive requires people to cross the three-lane, 50 mph roadway with no crosswalks. The redesign project will remove barriers and provide safe bicycle and pedestrian routes for Long Beach residents who have lacked safe access to destinations for decades.

Shoshone-Paiute Tribes Reconnecting Communities Planning Grant

Project At A Glance

  • Submitted by: Shoshone-Paiute Tribes
  • Location: Duck Valley Indian Reservation, Nevada
  • Project Type: Planning
  • Urban/Rural: Rural
  • Estimated Total Project Cost: $84,736
  • Amount Awarded: $67,444
Duck Valley Indian Reservation in Nevada | Courtesy of the Shoshone-Paiute Tribes of the Duck Valley Indian Reservation
Duck Valley Indian Reservation in Nevada | Courtesy of the Shoshone-Paiute Tribes of the Duck Valley Indian Reservation

The Shoshone-Paiute Tribes on the Nevada–Idaho border will study development of a trail system on the Duck Valley Indian Reservation to connect and access critical services, activities and sites. The reservation is only accessible by Highway 51/225, a two-lane north-south thoroughfare that houses a daycare, a gas station, local stores, neighborhood homes, a school, a recreation center and a health clinic serving the community. To the tribes, the highway is considered both an avenue and a barrier as facilities exist on both sides, but with just a few marked pedestrian crossings, and none with flashers or lights—except near the school. This planning project will exclusively use the development of trails to improve connectivity in the community.

Vision 980 Study Phase 2 – Feasibility Study

Project At A Glance

  • Submitted by: California Department of Transportation
  • Location: Oakland, California
  • Project Type: Planning
  • Urban/Rural: Urban
  • Estimated Total Project Cost: $850,000
  • Amount Awarded: $680,000
Bay Skyway (Bay Bridge Path) Rendering | Courtesy of ARUP
Bay Skyway (Bay Bridge Path) Rendering | Courtesy of ARUP

In Oakland, California, a feasibility study regarding the removal of Interstate 980 in conjunction with Oakland’s Grand Avenue Mobility Plan is part of an effort to improve walking and biking access to the future West Oakland Link pedestrian and bicycle pathway and overall Bay Skyway—a priority project of the Bay Area Trails Collaborative, an RTC TrailNation™ project. Construction of I-980 in the 1960s resulted in the loss of 503 homes, 22 businesses and four churches—almost all of which belonged to disadvantaged communities. The freeway created barriers to active transportation and limited access to employment, services and opportunities in Downtown Oakland for residents of the adjacent West Oakland community. This study will analyze ways to create more opportunities for including active transportation in an area historically disadvantaged by the divisive interstate.