The US Department of Transportation’s (DoT) Federal Highway Administration has funded $225m for bridge improvement projects across rural areas.

The funds for the Competitive Highway Bridge Program (CHBP) were allocated by Congress in the Consolidated Appropriations Act 2018.

Using 2010 census data, states with population densities of less than 100 people per square-mile were eligible to apply for the programme.

There are 20 projects across 18 of the 25 eligible states that have been selected for the grant.

US Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao said: “This $225m in federal funding will enable 18 states to make vital upgrades to select bridges in rural areas.”

The federal investment will see the replacement or restoration of highway bridges on public roads.

The funds are for those projects that offer cost and time savings by combining at least two highway bridge projects into a single contract.

US federal highway administrator Nicole Nason said: “The projects funded under the programme will serve as models for similar bridge improvement projects throughout the nation. They are examples of how to achieve time and cost savings through innovation.”

Iowa received the highest grant, amounting to $33.4m. It will be used to renovate approximately 77 bridges using ‘accelerated bridge construction technologies’.

In March this year, the DoT awarded a loan of $46.94m to the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority (CTRMA) to reduce congestion along the 290E Manor Expressway.