ST. LOUIS — The U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Transit Administration recently awarded about $6.8 million combined to two St. Louis-area transit districts for upgrades to their bus systems.
Both Metro Transit, the unit of Bi-State Development that oversees bus, light rail and paratransit operations in the St. Louis region, and Madison County Mass Transit District, which provides public transportation within Madison County, Illinois, received funding as part of $409.3 million in FTA grants recently announced for 70 projects in 39 states to electrify and improve U.S. bus systems.
Metro Transit will receive a nearly $4.1 million grant to fund new charging infrastructure at a new location and to buy several new electric buses to replace diesel buses that have exceeded their useful life and are scheduled to be retired.
The federal funds and local matching funding matches could support up to six new 40-foot battery-powered electric buses and new charging infrastructure at the DeBaliviere MetroBus facility, officials said Wednesday in a release.
The new vehicles being added to the electric bus fleet are zero-emission buses, with 70% to 80% funded through various FTA grants and 20% to 30% through local sales tax sources, officials said.
Metro Transit launched its electric bus program in June 2021 with 18 battery-powered electric buses. An additional six buses have been added to the agency's MetroBus battery-powered electric fleet in recent months, officials said Wednesday. The agency's existing electric fleet includes 14 60-foot battery-powered electric articulated buses made by New Flyer America and 10 40-foot battery-powered electric buses manufactured by GILLIG. The 60-foot vehicles are used exclusively on Metro’s busiest route, the No. 70 Grand, and carry about 10% of its customers daily, officials said. The GILLIG electric buses provide service on several MetroBus routes in the city of St. Louis and in St. Louis County.
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