President Obama spoke at the Port of Wilmington in Delaware on July 17 to announce a new executive action to create the Build America Investment Initiative, a government-wide initiative to increase infrastructure investment and economic growth by engaging with state and local governments and private sector investors to encourage collaboration, expand the market for public-private partnerships (PPPs) and put federal credit programs to greater use.
As part of the initiative, the administration is launching the Build America Transportation Investment Center – housed at the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) – to serve as a one-stop shop for cities and states seeking to use innovative financing and partnerships with the private sector to support transportation infrastructure.
Through hands-on support, advice and expertise, the center will make USDOT credit programs more understandable and accessible to states and local governments and leverage both public and private funding to support ambitious projects. The center will also provide private sector developers and infrastructure investors with tools and resources to identify and execute successful PPPs.
The center will encourage awareness and efficient use of existing resources at the department, including the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) program. The center will also focus on the use of key USDOT programs including the Private Activity Bond program and the Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Financing Program.