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TDOT funds programs to assist local governments with their transportation infrastructure and safety needs, including the following:
    As the name implies, this program provides funding for the lighting of interchanges along Tennessee’s Interstate system. Projects are requested in writing by local governments. An engineering assessment determines the type of lighting and estimated cost of the project. Once approved, these projects are funded with 50 percent state funding matched with an equal share of local funds.
    This program was developed to provide connecting roads between Tennessee’s Interstate System and local roads of important benefit to communities. Local governments make application to the department for the construction of these routes. A planning assessment determines their eligibility. Eligible projects are funded with 50 percent state funding matched with an equal share of local funds. Local interstate connecting routes become local roads.
    The Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU) passed by Congress in August of 2005 did not continue funding for the Optional Safety Program utilized by TDOT to address small, potential safety hazards on both local roads and state routes. To address this loss, TDOT is proposing a program that will address safety-related concerns on state routes and their intersections with local roads. Eligible activities include signalization, sight-distance improvement, turn lanes, school flashing signals, and flashing beacons. Local governments make application through TDOT’s Traffic Engineers. An engineering assessment determines the eligibility of the project. Approved projects are funded with 80 percent federal funding, matched with 20 percent state funds.
    Each year, the FHWA allocates Surface Transportation Program money to TDOT to be used for improvements on roads classified higher than local roads or rural minor collectors. TDOT sub-allocates these funds to cities of more than 5000 population. Eligible activities range from resurfacing to new construction. The program pays 80 percent of eligible costs with the remaining 20 percent paid by local governments if the project is on a local road. The state pays the match on projects on the State system of highways.

TDOT’s complete Long Range Transportation Plan which includes a 25-year strategy for the future of transportation for the state can be viewed on the TDOT web site at