The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to receive grant under Bipartisan Infrastructure Law as part of $130.5 million investment package for seven projects of national significance
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) today announced the award of $17.7 million to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to begin improvements of Multimodal Beach Access at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge in Virginia. The grant award will initiate the first phase of a larger project in partnership with the National Park Service and Assateague Island National Seashore that will allow for the relocation of the existing public recreational beach to a more stable part of the island. Construction will include a new access road, multiuse path and portions of new parking lots and other beach facilities that are better able to withstand extreme weather events.
“Under President Biden’s leadership, we are delivering infrastructure improvements on Federal and Tribal lands that communities have needed for decades,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “With today’s announcement, we’re making it easier for Americans to access some of our greatest natural wonders, and improving road safety in Tribal communities, which face some of the highest rates of traffic deaths in the nation.”
The project is one of seven to receive federal grants totaling $130.5 million under FHWA’s Nationally Significant Federal Lands and Tribal Transportation Projects Program. The grants announced today – which recognize transportation projects of national significance that serve Federal and Tribal lands – are part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda to rebuild our infrastructure and deliver big wins for the American people.
“With this grant that is part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, we’re helping to deliver safe and reliable transportation investments that will allow families and visitors to explore Virginia’s beaches and Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge for years to come,” said Federal Highway Administrator Shailen Bhatt. “This project also will help address the impacts of climate change and provide more resilient transportation infrastructure that is better able to withstand coastal storms and ensure continued access to visitors and local residents.”
“The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service appreciates this investment and recognition of the importance of coastal beaches on Virginia’s Eastern Shore by providing for long-needed improvements to Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge,” said U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Martha Williams. “This Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding allows the Service to continue work with partners including the National Park Service, the Town of Chincoteague, and Accomack County to foster the long-term health of the region’s economy by adapting to climate change impacts while conserving the refuge’s wildlife and habitats.”
In addition to the grants announced today, FHWA also opened applications for the next round of funding under the Nationally Significant Federal Lands and Tribal Transportation Projects Program. More information about the availability of $88 million in FY 2023 funds can be found in the Notice of Funding Opportunity. Information on how to apply is available at Grants.gov.