The Better Connections Program seeks to align state and local investments to increase transportation options, build resilience, and strengthen economic vitality in Vermont’s community centers, through an annual grant program administered by Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans), in partnership with the Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD). Municipalities annually compete for approximately $200,000 in projects funds. A 10% local cash match is required.
- Provide safe, multi-modal and resilient transportation systems that supports the Vermont economy
- Support downtown and village economic development and revitalization efforts
- Lead directly to project implementation
Eligible Project Categories
The Better Connections Program grants are for planning work leading to local policy decisions and implementation. Projects should address land use and development, context-sensitive design, transportation network connectivity and roadway design, water quality, green and grey infrastructure capacity, and economic development. All projects must support the Program Purpose and Objectives, include an effective community visioning process, and develop an implementation plan. The implementation plan should coincide with capital projects identified in the regional and municipal plan, municipal capital plan or the VTrans Capital Program.
Examples of eligible projects include, but are not necessarily limited to:
A. Activity Center Plans. Activity Center plans are smaller in geographic focus than Municipal Plans, and because of their smaller geography and focus; they provide more detailed implementation recommendations for specific areas. Activity Center Plans are a community-driven physical plan for future improvements.
B. Corridor Transportation and Land Use Plan (CTLUP). A CTLUP supports and encourages safe, comfortable multimodal transportation options (bicycle, pedestrian, vehicles, and transit) on state and town highways. The CTLUP geography varies, but the plan should be implementation-driven and deliver strategies to improve both the transportation and land use along a specific area of the corridor.
C. Innovative Transportation and Land Use Guidelines and Policies. Guidelines and bylaws that integrate transportation and land use to increase transportation options, support economic development and community resilience. The guidelines must be specific to a certain area (downtown, village, neighborhood or corridor) and not municipal-wide bylaws or standards.
Previous Grant Awardees
Key Program Dates 2018-2020
October 16, 2017
December 31, 2017
Pre-application Meeting Deadline & RPC Confirmation of Municipal Planning Process
January 31, 2018
March 2, 2018
Award Decisions Announced
- 2018-2020 Program Guidance (COMING FALL 2017)
- Application Coversheet (COMING FALL 2017)
- 2018-2020 Grant Application (COMING FALL 2017)
- Sample resolution
- Sample work plan & budget
Grant Administration Resources
- Grant Administration Guidance
- Project Commitment Form
- RFP Advertisement Guidance
- RFP Sample
- Local Press Release Sample
- Invoice Template
Grant Close Out Resources
BC Program Contact Information
Jackie Cassino | Planning Coordinator
Policy, Planning & Intermodal Development
Vermont Agency of Transportation
Richard Amore | Planning & Project Manager
Community Planning + Revitalization
Agency of Commerce and Community Development