Transportation Reinvestment Zone
The demand for transportation infrastructure has far outpaced the resources of federal, state and local governments. So the Texas Legislature has established innovative methods of developing and financing transportation projects. One such tool local entities use to advance transportation projects is a transportation reinvestment zone (TRZ).
The local governing body designates a zone in which it will promote a transportation project. Once the zone is created, a base year is established, and the incremental increase in property tax revenue collected inside the zone is used to finance a project in the zone.
Eligibility and Program Details
Cites, counties and port authorities have the authority to set up a TRZ.
The city, county or port authority must make the following determinations in order to set up a zone:
- The proposed zone must be deemed underdeveloped.
- The area of the TRZ will 1) promote public safety; 2) facilitate the improvement, development or redevelopment of property; 3) facilitate the movement of traffic; and 4) enhance the local entity’s ability to sponsor transportation projects.
Many local governments are familiar with tax increment reinvestment zones (TIRZ) and tax increment financing (TIF), but the TRZ is a recently created tool that allows for a broader range of transportation projects. A TRZ also does not require the local entity to create a board.
To establish a Transportation Reinvestment Zone:
- Identify project/needs
- Research for zone formation
- Define boundaries
- Hold public hearing
- Pass the ordinance or order
- Establish base year for tax collection
- Determine tax increment through feasibility study for financing portion of project
- Establish funding mechanism
TxDOT Project Finance, Debt and Strategic Contracts Division