Contact: Angela Gates
EAST LANSING – U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood today announced $46.7 million in federal funding for Michigan to replace aging buses and transit facilities to improve service for thousands of people who take public transit every day. The seven 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 Michigan, 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 they need to go each day, we will keep our economy moving forward well into the future.”
Robert Rivkin, General Counsel of the U.S. Department of Transportation, was in East Lansing today to announce a $6.3 million grant to the Capital Area Transportation Authority to renovate the East Lansing Amtrak Station near Michigan State University.
“This station provides a vital link for thousands of students and local commuters who pass through here every day to board a bus, hop a bike, or take a train,” said Rivkin. “This is a great win for the capital city region – modernizing essential facility, making it accessible for people with disabilities, improving safety for pedestrians and providing transportation options.”
In addition to the East Lansing grant, the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) announced funding for six additional projects in Michigan:
- Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transportation: $30 million to replace aging buses throughout Greater Detroit, install on-board security cameras, add a GPS automatic vehicle location system to improve on-time performance of transit vehicles, and rehabilitate the Coolidge Terminal.
- Michigan Department of Transportation: $5 million to be shared among 20 rural transit agencies to replace aging buses with more fuel-efficient vehicles to reduce emissions, save on gas, and provide a better ride for rural residents throughout the State of Michigan.
- The Mass Transportation Authority in Flint: $4 million to replace aging transit vehicles with sustainable, fuel-efficient hybrid electric and propane-fueled vehicles to reduce emissions and lower fuel costs.
- The Livingston County Transit Agency: $877,476 to replace aging transit buses, and expand the fleet with new buses, to reduce emissions and reduce fuel costs.
- Harbor Transit Multi-Modal Transportation System: $482,240 to replace aging diesel buses with more fuel-efficient vehicles to reduce emissions, save on gas, and provide a better ride for residents and commuters in Grand Haven.
- Blue Water Area Transportation Commission: $79,000 to improve safety for St. Claire Community College riders and others who depend on local bus service to get around by adding off-street bus boarding and better access to transit for those riding bicycles.
Generally, a transit authority with a fleet of about 20 buses that upgrades from standard diesel to hybrid-electric power can expect to save roughly $200,000 in fuel costs over a year.
Reflecting the need for infrastructure investment, demand for the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) FY2012 State of Good Repair and Bus Livability funds was overwhelming. FTA received 836 project applications requesting $4 billion. In FY2010 and FY2011, FTA awarded a total of more than $1.8 billion in grants for hundreds of state of good repair projects, primarily involving buses and bus facilities.