Transportation grants to two Oklahoma tribes total $27 million


Nearly $27 million in federal transportation funding has been announced for the Cherokee Nation and the Seminole Nation in Oklahoma.

The funds are part of the Reconnecting Communities Pilot and Neighborhood Access and Equity discretionary grant program as part of President Biden’s Investing in American Agenda.

The Seminole Nation is getting $25,523,382 to build a transportation visitor center and transit plaza. The government announcement stated the multifunctional building will recomment residents of the rural Seminole Reservation through public transportation, social and cultural engagement and economic opportunities.

A grant of $2.498,931 for the Cherokee Nation will go for the tribe’s Willis Road and Bridge Project, which will inform the design, engineering, and economic feasibility of the construction of 5.6 miles of new roadway and a new bridge crossing over the Illinois River.

The lack of transportation facilities inhibits connections and isolates neighborhoods from parks, schools, community services, and other destinations, leading to economic and social isolation. The project removes barriers by increasing the effectiveness of public services offered to Tribal citizens. Construction of the Willis Road Bridge Project will improve emergency service response times, law enforcement response times, and help expand tribal transit services.