Contact: Angela Gates
SANTA FE, N.M. – The U.S. Department of Transportation today announced $2.5 million in federal funding for New Mexico to replace aging buses and transit vehicles that will improve transit service for thousands of people who take public transit every day. The three projects are among 255 projects in 48 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico selected to receive a share of $787 million in funding.
“President Obama’s support for an America built to last is putting people back to work across the country, including here in New Mexico, modernizing our nation’s roads, rails, bridges, and public transit systems,” said Secretary LaHood. “By investing in the transit infrastructure people depend on to get where we need to go each day, we will keep our economy moving forward well into the future.”
Deputy Federal Transit Administrator Therese McMillan was in Santa Fe today to announce a $1.9 million grant to the City of Santa Fe to replace aging buses in the Santa Fe Trails bus fleet with compressed natural gas buses that will reduce emissions, save on fuel costs, and provide more reliable service.
“With over half the city’s buses at or near the end of their useful life, these funds go a long way to put more comfortable and efficient clean-fuel vehicles on the road to meet rising demand for service,” said Deputy Administrator McMillan. “This is a big win for everybody, by reducing highway congestion, improving air quality, and offering balanced transportation choices for residents who need a dependable ride to work, medical appointments and elsewhere.”
In addition to the Santa Fe grant, FTA also announced funding for two additional projects in New Mexico:
- City of Las Cruces: $278,050 to purchase replacement paratransit vehicles for use in the city’s Dial-a-Ride program to improve service for seniors and people with disabilities.
- New Mexico Department of Transportation: $340,000 to help the Rio Metro Transit District in Albuquerque to develop new and improved ways to cost-effectively manage and maintain the condition of their facilities and equipment.
The funds are provided through FTA’s FY2012 State of Good Repair and Bus Livability programs. The selection process was highly competitive, with FTA receiving 836 project applications representing $4 billion in funding requests from transit providers. In FY2010 and FY2011, FTA awarded more than $1.8 billion in grants for hundreds of state of good repair projects, primarily involving buses and bus facilities.