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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

Fixed Guideway Modernization (5309 (b)(2))

Program Overview

The transit capital investment program (49 U.S.C. 5309) provides capital assistance for three primary activities:

Fixed Guideway Modernization

Rail Fixed Guideway System means any light, heavy, or rapid rail system, monorail, inclined plane, funicular, trolley, or automated guideway that:

  1. Is not regulated by the Federal Railroad Administration; and
  2. Is included in FTA's calculation of fixed guideway route miles or receives funding under FTA's formula program for urbanized areas (49 U.S.C. 5336 ); or
  3. Has submitted documentation to FTA indicating its intent to be included in FTA's calculation of fixed guideway route miles to receive funding under FTA's formula program for urbanized areas (49 U.S.C. 5336).

Eligible Recipients

Eligible recipients are public bodies and agencies (transit authorities and other state and local public bodies and agencies thereof) including states, municipalities, other political subdivisions of states; public agencies and instrumentalities of one or more states; and certain public corporations, boards, and commissions established under state law.

Eligible Activities

Eligible activities are capital projects to modernize or improve existing fixed guideway systems, including purchase and rehabilitation of rolling stock, track, line equipment, structures, signals and communications, power equipment and substations, passenger stations and terminals, security equipment and systems, maintenance facilities and equipment, operational support equipment including computer hardware and software, system extensions, and preventive maintenance. 

Statutory Reference

49 USC §5309(b)(2)

Funding Availability

Funds are available the year appropriated plus three years (total of four years)

Allocation of Funding

Funds are allocated by a statutory formula to urbanized areas with rail systems that have been in operation for at least seven years.

The formula for allocating funds contains seven tiers. The allocation of funding under the first four tiers is based on data used to apportion the funding in fiscal year 1997. Funding under the last three tiers is apportioned based on the latest available route miles and revenue vehicle miles on segments at least seven years old as reported to the National Transit Database. A threshold level of more than one mile of fixed guideway is required to receive these funds.


80 percent Federal, 20 percent local.