Zero-emissions Access Program grant
Find information and learn how to apply for the Zero-emissions Access Program (ZAP) grant, which provides funding for zero-emission carshare pilot programs in underserved and low- to moderate-income communities.
The Zero-emissions Access Program (ZAP) grant provides funding for zero-emission carshare pilot programs. ZAP grants fund carshare pilot programs in underserved and low- to moderate-income communities that have limited access to public transportation or are in areas where emissions exceed state or federal standards.
The ZAP grant’s goal is to expand access to clean-fuel transportation options and provide opportunities for zero-emission carshare programs in underserved communities where access to public transportation is less available (RCW 47.04.355).
Low- to moderate-income communities– Not exceeding 80% of the median family income for the area, subject to adjustments for areas with unusually high or low incomes or housing costs (Section 3(b)(2) of the United States Housing Act of 1937).
Underserved communities – Populations sharing a particular characteristic, as well as geographic communities, who have been systematically denied a full opportunity to participate in aspects of economic, social, and civic life, as exemplified by the definition of equity in Presidential Executive Order No. 13985, Sec. 2, 2021.
Carshare members experience the benefits of private vehicle use without the cost of ownership. Carshare companies or nonprofits typically include services such as membership screening and enrollment, car reservation systems, payment processing, insurance for drivers, customer service, and car maintenance.
Applicants may wish to define carshare more broadly to propose innovative projects that meet the unique needs of the communities they serve.
If you have questions about whether your project qualifies as a zero-emission carshare program, please contact us.
Carshare vehicles must be equipped, licensed, and insured for use on public roads, including highways, without requiring a special driver's license classification or endorsement.
We anticipate approximately $1.1 million in state funding for ZAP projects in the 2023-2025 biennium.
Grant award amounts
We will make awards of $50,000-$200,000 per project.
Applicants may apply for more than one project. Each project requires a separate application.
The ZAP grant is open to nonprofit organizations or local governments in Washington state. Local governments include cities, counties, housing authorities, ports, and public transit agencies.
2021-2023 ZAP grant recipients may apply for funding to support the ongoing implementation of existing ZAP carshare programs.
Applicants must have a demonstrated history of implementing or managing clean-fuel transportation and shared-mobility pilot programs. Examples of experience may include implementing:
- Transportation services for shared users (e.g., carshare or rideshare programs)
- Micromobility programs for shared users (e.g., bike sharing)
- Free and reduced-fare programs
- Subcontracts with agencies that have provided clean-fuel transportation and shared-mobility pilot programs for the community
- Installation of electric-vehicle infrastructure for community use
This is not a comprehensive list. If you have questions about experience that will qualify, please contact us.
Projects and related costs for the ZAP grant may include the following:
- Third-party contract, lease, or purchase of zero-emission vehicles and charging equipment
- Construction or installation of zero-emission charging station infrastructure for a carshare
- Operational costs to develop, implement, and manage a zero-emission carshare program
New project proposals may include planning activities if projects are running by June 30, 2024.
WSDOT strongly encourages applicants to design projects that maximize the accessibility of carshare vehicles and program materials. Applicants can prioritize access by:
- Choosing vehicles that meet the needs of the community
- Stationing vehicles in locations that promote safety and ease of use for all levels of ability
- Translating program materials and signage into languages that remove barriers to access
- Intentionally planning outreach and training activities for the specific needs of the community
- Creating paths to participation for community members without bank accounts, who have limited access to technology, or who otherwise face barriers to using the carshare
Property and assets bought with ZAP grant funds by non-government organizations must be used only for the carshare program. If the property or asset is sold, the proceeds must be used for the carshare program only. At the end of the ZAP-funded carshare, non-government organizations who wish to keep any property or asset purchased with state funds must reimburse the state the fair market value of the property or asset at that time.
ZAP grant applicants must provide matching funds as direct contributions or gifts-in-kind equal to at least 10% of the total project cost.
Applicants may use any funding source as matching funds, except for other competitive state public transportation grants.
In-kind contributions are non-cash contributions provided by third parties to an organization. In-kind contributions may be in the form of real property, equipment, supplies, and services. In-kind contributions should directly benefit and be specifically identifiable to the project.
Examples of in-kind contributions include free or reduced-cost parking or facilities, volunteer administrative work, or donated technology. The value of donated goods or services will be based on the fair market price at the time of the donation.
Applicants with in-kind contributions must provide documentation of in-kind valuation with their application. The value of donated goods or services will be based on the fair market price at the time of the donation. The in-kind match valuation supplemental form is available in the application to assist the development and documentation of your in-kind contributions.
If you have questions about match requirements, please contact us.
March 15, 2023: WSDOT posts informational notice of funding opportunity.
April 12, 2023: Grant application available in the Grants Management System (GMS) for the 2023-2025 biennium.
11 a.m., April 18, 2023: Informational webinar for prospective applicants. Register for the webinar.
3 p.m., May 17, 2023: Grant applications due in the GMS.
May - June 2023: Evaluation panel reviews and scores applications.
Late June 2023: WSDOT sends award letters to grantees.
July 1, 2023: 2023-2025 biennium begins.
June 30, 2025: 2023-2025 biennium ends. Grant funds must be spent by this date.
Planning to apply
WSDOT strongly encourages interested applicants to start planning before the application opens.
Create a zero-emission carshare program that fits the needs of your community
Every community has their own unique transportation needs. There is no one-size-fits-all plan. ZAP grant applicants have the flexibility to propose projects that work for the communities they serve. You may find it helpful to research existing zero-emission carshare programs in underserved communities across the country for insights on how best to structure your program.
In 2018, the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency published Facilitating Low-Income Utilization of Electric Vehicles: A Feasibility Study. The results and recommendations of the study informed the development of the ZAP grant.
Develop strategic partnerships to design, implement, and manage your project
Depending on the scope of your proposal, you may need to coordinate with utilities, electricians, electric-vehicle-supply equipment providers, third-party carshare providers, car dealerships, contractors, insurance companies, and other partners to establish your community carshare.
Partnerships with equity-focused, community-based organizations are especially important and will be essential for engagement, outreach, and education to support your ZAP-funded carshare program. Build these partnerships early.
Work with key partners to identify and address logistical challenges
Establishing key partnerships early in the planning process will help you proactively identify and address risks to your project.
For example, if it’s important to your community to own or lease the zero-emission vehicles and run the carshare in-house, you’ll need to shop for car insurance. Insurance providers may be reluctant to provide coverage if your organization doesn’t have a fleet of vehicles, requiring you to explore other solutions.
Additionally, completing a site assessment early in your planning may reveal electrical upgrades, site changes, or security enhancements that you can factor into your project timeline and budget.
Community meetings or surveys may also give you valuable feedback on community interest in a zero-emission carshare program and areas where outreach, education, and training will be needed.
The ZAP grant table below shows 18 projects awarded $2.8 million for the 2023-2025 biennium.
|Forth Mobility Fund||King||Seattle Housing Authority carshare||$124,960|
|Forth Mobility Fund||King||King County Housing Authority carshare||$63,140|
|Forth Mobility Fund||Klickitat||White Salmon/Bingen carshare||$126,088|
|Lopez Community Land Trust||San Juan||Lopez Community Land Trust carshare||$80,213|
|Mobility for All||Kitsap||Town Square Share||$199,537|
|Purpose Driven Girl||King||PDG Tukwila carshare||$139,848|
|San Juan Islands Shuttle System||San Juan||OPAL green carshare||$188,551|
|Tabor 100||King||TABOR 100 carshare for underserved communities||$133,650|
|Women of Wisdom Tri-Cities||Benton, Franklin||WoW carshare, Pasco||$200,000|
|Women of Wisdom Tri-Cities||Benton, Franklin||WoW ADA carshare, Kennewick||$200,000|
|Women of Wisdom Tri-Cities||Benton, Franklin||WoW carshare, Kennewick||$200,000|
|Zero-Emission Vehicle Cooperative||King||Shoreline share||$167,021|
|Zero-Emission Vehicle Cooperative||King||Des Moines share||$199,979|
|Zero-Emission Vehicle Cooperative||Spokane||Gonzaga share||$199,912|
|Zero-Emission Vehicle Cooperative||Pierce||Plaza North share||$128,042|
|Zero-Emission Vehicle Cooperative||Pierce||Salishan share||$129,682|
|Zero-Emission Vehicle Cooperative||King||Estelita's share||$199,434|
|Zero-Emission Vehicle Cooperative||Jefferson||Port Townsend share||$199,943|
Sign up for grant updates
To stay informed about WSDOT public transportation grants, you can register for updates by selecting "Public Transportation Grants" under "Funding" in the GovDelivery menu.
To stay informed about zero-emission vehicle infrastructure grant programs select "Zero-Emission Vehicle Grants" under "Funding" in the GovDelivery menu.