Request for Proposals: Knoxville MSA Climate Pollution Reduction Grant Regional Outreach Consultant

We are soliciting proposals to conduct outreach throughout the Knoxville MSA in association with a Climate Pollution Reduction Grant issued by the United Stated Environmental Protection Agency. Additional information can be found within the document below.

Request for Proposals


Proposals are due March 15, 2024 by 4:30 p.m. EST and can be submitted electronically.


Ally Ketron
Strategic Planning and Communications Manager
Knoxville-Knox County Planning

Questions and Responses
Questions received by the March 4 deadline, as well as staff responses, can be found below. 

Question: What portion of the $1 million grant is designated as the budget for the Regional Outreach Consultant to be chosen in this RFP process?
If possible, could you please supply a budget ceiling or estimated cost range. We can imagine different cost scenarios to complete the work but don’t want to risk being too comprehensive with our approach and proposing a budget that is beyond what TPO is expecting/has planned for. We could also prepare 2-3 budget scenarios that are somewhat tiered in what we could do or offer (e.g., budgets with and without software/other things that can be omitted/extracted; different types and number of outreach events for different populations, etc.).

Answer: The City of Knoxville contracted with Knoxville-Knox County Planning for regional outreach throughout the MSA. The total amount of that contract was $350,000, though the total amount designated for an outreach consultant will be less than the total contract amount. The final budget for the outreach consultant will be dependent on the scope of work proposed. We encourage respondents to assign costs to each task so that the budget can be adjusted if necessary during refinement of the scope.

Question: Are you looking for letters of support from partnering organizations?
Answer: Letters of support from partnering organizations are welcomed but not required.

Question: If there are only a couple of applicants, we are open to partnering with other organizations/sharing work. Is there an opportunity for this?
Answer: We are unable to comment on potential partnerships between applicants prior to seeing full responses.

Question: Are the tasks included in the scope of work expected to be performed in the order given?
Answer: There will likely be overlap of the tasks listed within the scope of work, and the consultant does not have to complete them in the order listed.

Question: Will the PCAP be completed and available to share with respondents to the RFP before the deadline of March 15?
Answer: The PCAP was submitted to the EPA on March 1, 2024 and was posted on the Breathe website on March 5, 2024.

Question: The RFP states “Proposals should provide a schedule for accomplishing all tasks for Phase II related to the CCAP.” Is there no outreach required by respondents to the RFP for Phase I?
Answer: Phase I, or the Priority Climate Action Plan (PCAP), was the first deliverable due under the planning grant and was submitted to the EPA on March 1, 2024. This effort included outreach to stakeholders, identification of LIDAC communities, and a general plan for future outreach during the CCAP. Because the PCAP has already been submitted, respondents do not need to incorporate the phase into their responses.

Question: Does Knoxville MSA/Knoxville-Knox County Planning currently work with an agency? If so, is that agency anticipated to respond?
Answer: Knoxville-Knox County Planning does not currently work with an agency.

Question: Do we need to be an existing vendor?
Answer: You do not need to be an existing vendor in order to submit a proposal.

Question: Which population segments do you wish to survey? How are they defined?
Answer: Low-income and disadvantaged communities (LIDACs) will be a focus of outreach efforts. The PCAP includes a list of measures aimed at reducing GHG pollution throughout the Knoxville MSA region, and aims to provide 40% of the benefits of the measures to LIDACs identified through the federal Justice40 Initiative in Executive Order 14008. Additional population segments will also be surveyed.

Question: Should the response include scope and cost associated with fielding, analyzing, and reporting on the survey results or only the development of a proposed tool and approach for distribution?
Answer: The response should include a full scope and all costs associated with surveys, which may include tools, distribution, fielding, analyzing, and reporting.

Question: Is the expectation that subsequent surveys would be tracking surveys to measure changes in awareness and perception, or would subsequent surveys have unique goals?
Answer: While it is likely that there would be more than one survey with unique goals, there is not a defined expectation at this point. Planning would look for guidance on additional surveys and whether tracking is beneficial. If scope and budget is dependent on the type of survey, that should be noted in the proposal. 

Question: Are you open to other recommendations for capturing target population input to inform the development of communications tools and content and to identify trusted community groups? 
Answer: Knoxville-Knox County Planning welcomes all ideas, recommendations, and best-practices suggested by respondents to engage in this work throughout the region.

Public Review and Comment Period for Air Quality Conformity Determination on Amendments to the Knoxville Regional Transportation Planning Organization FY 2023 – 2026 Transportation Improvement Program

The Knoxville Regional Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) announces a 30-day public review and comment period (March 27, 2023 through April 25, 2022) for amendments to the FY2023 – 2026 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) involving existing project ID’s #23-2014-025 (Pellissippi Pkwy Extension) and #23-2020-005 (Foothills Mall Dr Extension Ph. 2). The TPO is soliciting public comments on the Air Quality Conformity Determination made for this amendment package. You are invited to comment by phone, email or in-person at 400 Main Street, Suite 403, Knoxville, TN. Additionally, public comments may be made at the TPO Technical Committee meeting on Tuesday, April 11, 2023 held at 9 a.m. in the Small Assembly Room of the City-County Building, 400 Main Street, Knoxville, TN. Comments can be made to Mike Conger at 865-215-3813 or at

Short Conformity Report for April 2023 Knoxville Regional TPO TIP Amendments

Transit Program of Projects Public Hearing Scheduled

The Executive Board of the Knoxville Regional Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) will hold a Public Hearing at its regular meeting on Wednesday, April 26, 2023 at 9:00 a.m. in the Small Assembly Room of the City-County Building, 400 Main Street, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the purpose of considering public comment both written and oral on the proposed Program of Projects (POP) funded by Fiscal Year 2023 Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Section 5307 Urbanized Area Formula, Section 5339 Bus & Bus Facilities, and Section 5310 Enhanced Mobility for Seniors & Individuals with Disabilities grant funds.

The City of Knoxville is the designated recipient of the Section 5307 & 5339 funds.  Knoxville Knox County Planning is the designated recipient of the Section 5310 funds.  The times established for public review and for allowing public comment on the POP follow the TPO’s Transportation Improvement Plan public involvement process.  If there are no changes, the POP will be considered final. 

Proposed Program of Projects

Interested persons, agencies, and private transportation providers are encouraged to participate.  To be mailed or faxed a copy of the POP or to provide comments contact Doug Burton at 400 Main Street, Suite 403, Knoxville, TN 37902 or at (865) 215-3824 or at  Comments must be submitted by 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, April 25, 2023 to be read during the meeting.   

Call for Projects: Federal Transit Administration, Knoxville Urban Area Section 5310 Funding

The TPO is soliciting projects to be funded through the FTA Section 5310-Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities Program.  Projects can include both operating services and vehicle purchases.  Non-profits who serve the elderly or persons who are disabled may be eligible to apply for funding for vehicles to serve their clients.  Projects are selected through a competitive process.  The TPO Executive Board determines final awards.  Funding is through Knoxville-Knox County Planning, the contracting agency for the TPO.      


Submit applications and/or supplemental materials below by 4:00 p.m. EST on Friday, April 21, 2023

Application Submissions

Questions or concerns

Mr. Doug Burton
Knoxville Regional TPO
400 Main Street, Suite 403 – Knoxville, TN 37902
865-215-3824 or

Check this site frequently for updates.

Call for Projects: FY 2023-2026 Transportation Improvement Program – Surface Transportation Block Grant (STBG) and Surface Transportation Block Grant – Transportation Alternatives (STBG-TA) Federal Funding Opportunity

The Knoxville Regional Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) is currently developing the Fiscal Year 2023-2026 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP). The TIP is updated on a three-year cycle and covers a period of four years. This call for projects allows jurisdictions to apply for new projects, or roll over and update unobligated phases of projects currently programmed in the FY 2020-2023 TIP.

Funding Availability

  • TPO STBG Funds – TPO staff has identified an un-obligated local Surface Transportation Block Grant (L-STBG) federal fund balance of approximately $56 million in FY 2023 available to program projects rolled over from the current TIP, cover funding shortfalls in rollover projects and fund new projects. Fiscal years 2024 through 2026 are projected to have approximately $14.5 million available annually. STBG funds are eligible for most project-types, but if used on a roadway project then it must be classified as Urban Minor Collector or higher on the state’s functional classification system. Most projects require a 20% local match.
  • TPO STBG-TA Funds – Approximately $1.2M is available to program projects rolled over from the current TIP, cover funding shortfalls in rollover projects and fund new projects in FY 2023. Fiscal years 2024 through 2026 are projected to have approximately $900,000 available annually. Again, projects typically require a 20% local match. More information about the STBG-TA program and eligible project types can be found here:
  • Final revenue amounts will be determined by authorizations from the federal transportation bill. Carryover funds may be impacted by cost increases within the current TIP program.

Application Process

Fillable application forms are included in the links below. New projects (those not rolled over from FY 2023-2026 TIP) will submit a full application form. Projects programmed in the current TIP (and eligible for rollover programming, as determined by TIP Policies) will submit a simplified project rollover/update form. Please contact TPO staff for any questions about the application forms, or to verify which form to complete. Applications are due to TPO staff by Friday, February 25th.

Evaluation Criteria

Projects will be scored and ranked using the criteria based on the goals and factors developed for the Mobility Plan 2045 process as shown on the project application form. Other criteria that TPO staff will be evaluating in making project selection recommendations will involve an assessment of project completion scheduling and assessment of project delays as determined by TIP programming policies. This assessment will be based on ease of project implementation, past performance of the sponsoring agency in the TDOT project development process and amount/status of other projects already under development by the sponsoring agency.

Call for Projects Timeline and Draft TIP Development Schedule

  • Begin Call for Projects – January 14, 2022
  • End Call for Projects – Friday, February 25, 2022
  • TPO Staff Scoring and Project Selection Recommendation – March, 2022
  • Draft TIP to Technical Committee/Executive Board for Review – June, 2022
  • Final TIP Technical Committee Recommendation/Executive Board Adoption – September, 2022

While individuals can’t submit a project application, we encourage the public to reach out to your local leaders now if there is a project you think should be included.

Related Documents

Connecting People and Places by Bike

Anthony Taylor with Slow Roll Twin Cities spoke with our Active Knox audience via Zoom on May 25. Anthony, along with our local panelists, talked about connecting more Black people with bicycling as a way to improve health, community connections, and mobility. 

We were joined by two local panelists:

Jalonda Thompson is a local leader with Black Girls Do Bike, which is committed to growing and supporting a community of women of color who share a passion for cycling.

De’Ossie Dingus is director of Alliance House Community Coalition, an organization committed to addressing racism as a public health crisis in the Knoxville community.

Tennessee Bicycle Law provided sponsorship for this event. You can find numerous clips from our conversation on the Active Knox Youtube channel