MARAD Opens Up $662M in Port Infrastructure Funding

The U.S. Maritime Administration – known as MARAD – has issued a notice of funding opportunity that makes more than $662 million worth of fiscal year 2023 grants available to support port modernization efforts across the country.

[Above photo by Stephen B. Morton for the Georgia Ports Authority]

Those funds – available through MARAD’s Port Infrastructure Development Program or PIDP – can be used for a variety of projects, such as the installation of fast charging stations for electric vehicles, intermodal rail yard expansion, the addition of warehouse capacity, and storm-water infrastructure improvements, among others.

Image by MARAD

The agency said PIDP grants provide planning, capital funding, and project management assistance to improve port capacity and efficiency in both urban and rural areas for planning and capital projects. It also includes a statutory set-aside for small ports to continue to improve and expand their capacity to move freight reliably and efficiently and support local and regional economies.

Those freight capacity investments are a reflection of major supply chain issues affecting both the U.S. and global economy, MARAD said.

“This funding will support efforts by ports and industry stakeholders to improve port and related freight infrastructure to meet the Nation’s freight transportation needs and ensure our port infrastructure can support future growth,” said Maritime Administrator Ann Phillips in a statement.

Ann Phillips (at podium). Photo by MARAD.

“The program also includes a statutory set-aside for small ports to continue to improve and expand their capacity to move freight reliably and efficiently, support local and regional economies, and support supply chain improvement,” she added.

The agency said it will host a series of webinars – which will be listed on the PIDP webpage – that describe PIDP NOFO requirements as well as the PIDP application process. Recordings of those webinars will be posted on MARAD’s website for those that cannot participate. MARAD also developed a list of Frequently Asked Questions – available by clicking here – for port grant applicants.

[Editor’s note: In a related funding effort, the Federal Highway Administration will soon accept FY 2022-20223 grant applications for its “Reduction of Truck Emissions at Port Facilities” program, which will make $160 million available to test, evaluate, and deploy projects that reduce port-related emissions from idling trucks, including through the advancement of port electrification and improvements in efficiency.]

In November 2022, MARAD disbursed more than $703 million in PIDP grants to 41 projects in 22 states and one U.S. territory.

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