/ Bridges / Interstate Bridge Replacement program offers second round of community engagement miniature grants

Interstate Bridge Replacement program offers second round of community engagement miniature grants

Parul Dubey on August 10, 2023 - in Bridges, Transportation

Funding available to expand involvement by equity-priority communities


VANCOUVER, Wash. – The bi-state Interstate Bridge Replacement program is opening its second round of small-scale, low-barrier grants for community-based organizations. Eligible organizations may apply through Sept. 10 for funds to partner with the IBR program and support community engagement efforts with the members they serve. 

The IBR program’s first small-scale, low-barrier grant program was implemented in 2021 to cultivate relationships with local community groups and assist them in expanding community engagement efforts with equity-priority communities. This second round of small-scale, low-barrier grants will provide community organizations resources at varying levels in exchange for support extending the IBR program’s outreach through their networks. Eligible organizations do not need to be transportation focused to qualify for funding and organizations that received funding through the first round of grants are welcome to apply again.

“Meaningful and intentional feedback from those who have typically been excluded from the process of designing and building large infrastructure projects is essential to the success of this program,” said Greg Johnson, IBR program administrator. “We recognize and value the trusting relationships that exist between community-based organizations and equity-priority communities, and we believe it is a ‘win-win’ to collaborate with these organizations to extend our reach and be certain everyone has the opportunity to have their voice heard.” 

Equity-priority communities for the IBR program are defined as those who experience or have experienced discrimination and exclusion based on identity, such as: 

  • BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color).
  • People with disabilities.
  • Communities with limited English proficiency.
  • Lower income and houseless individuals and families.
  • Immigrants and refugees.
  • Young people and older adults.

Organizations that serve equity-priority communities in or near the IBR program area (in Portland, Oregon and Vancouver, Washington), are invited to participate. Those selected must have multiple modes of engagement with their member base (social media, email, phones and/or newsletters) and a history or experience in community organizing. Recipients must also be a legally incorporated nonprofit organization for at least one year at the time of application. Grants will be awarded in exchange for conducting outreach and engagement activity that is focused on the IBR program.

More information and the grant program application are available online. The application period is open through Sunday, Sept. 10. Questions about the grant program or other topics may be sent to [email protected]

Free, temporary internet access is available to those who do not have broadband service in locations throughout the state. To find the nearest Drive-In WiFi Hotspot visit: www.commerce.wa.gov/building-infrastructure/washington-state-drive-in-wifi-hotspots-location-finder/

Free WiFi access in Portland is available at these locations: 

  • Peninsula Park Community Center, 700 N. Rosa Parks Way, Portland, Ore., 97217
  • Matt Dishman Community Center, 77 NE Knott Street, Portland, Ore., 97212
  • St. Johns Community Center, 8427 N. Central Street, Portland, Ore., 97203
  • Kenton Library, 8226 N. Denver Avenue, Portland, Ore., 97217
  • St. Johns Library, 7510 N. Charleston Avenue, Portland, Ore., 97203


Hyperlinks within the release:


About the Bi-State Interstate Bridge Replacement Program

Replacing the aging Interstate Bridge across the Columbia River with a modern, seismically resilient, multimodal structure that provides improved mobility for people, goods and services is a high priority for Oregon and Washington. Governors and legislative leadership in both states directed the Oregon Department of Transportation and Washington State Department of Transportation to launch the bi-state Interstate Bridge Replacement (IBR) Program to lead this work, recognizing that needed safety and transportation improvements to the existing Interstate Bridge remain unaddressed. Program development centers equity and follows a transparent, data-driven process that includes collaboration with local, state, federal, and tribal partners. Visit the program website at www.interstatebridge.org

Americans with Disabilities Act Information
This material can be made available in an alternate format by emailing the Office of Equity and Civil Rights at [email protected] or by calling toll free, 855-362-4ADA (4232). Persons who are deaf or hard of hearing may make a request by calling the Washington State Relay at 711.

For ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) or Civil Rights Title VI accommodations, translation/interpretation services, or more information for those in Oregon, please call 503-731-4128, TTY 800-735- 2900 or Oregon Relay Service 711.

Title VI Notice to Public
It is the Washington State Department of Transportation’s policy to assure that no person shall, on the grounds of race, color, national origin, as provided by Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be otherwise discriminated against under any of its programs and activities. Any person who believes his or her Title VI protection has been violated, may file a complaint with WSDOT’s Office of Equity and Civil Rights (OECR). For additional information regarding Title VI complaint procedures and/or information regarding our non-discrimination obligations, please contact OECR’s Title VI Coordinator at (360) 705-7090.


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