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Home / Neighborhood / LA County / Los Angeles County to receive $77.5M from feds for electric buses

Los Angeles County to receive $77.5M from feds for electric buses

by Staff
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The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority will receive $77.5 million to purchase new electric buses and charging equipment to support its emission-free bus fleet, the Federal Transit Administration announced Tuesday. 

The funding from the FTA, which is a division of the U.S. Department of Transportation, is part of $1.5 billion for 117 public transportation projects in 47 states.

LA Metro’s new battery electric buses will replace older buses that run on compressed natural gas and have exceeded their usefulness, officials said.

“The new fleet will improve air quality in and around Los Angeles, further Metro’s plans for electrifying its entire fleet and better serve disadvantaged communities,” according to the FTA. “As part of the project, Metro will train personnel to operate and maintain the new battery electric buses.”

Under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the FTA has awarded nearly $5 billion since 2022 to replace and modernize transit buses nationwide, according to the agency. The U.S. factories will produce more than 4,600 new buses. 

“Today, another 117 communities across 47 states are receiving the good news that their transit buses are being modernized and their commutes improved through President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said in a statement. “The Biden-Harris Administration is helping agencies replace old buses running on dirtier, expensive fuels by delivering modern and zero-emission buses, manufactured by American workers, that will connect more people to where they need to go.”  

About 80% of the new buses manufactured under the federal grant program will run on zero- and low-emission technology to help meet the Biden administration’s goal of zero emissions by 2050.  

“Thanks to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, we are creating new opportunities to improve the lives of millions of Americans who rely daily on buses,” said FTA Acting Administrator Veronica Vanterpool. “These grants will help deliver cleaner and greener transportation, designed to reach everyone, and to work for everyone, particularly in places that haven’t received enough resources in the past.” 

For this year’s grant awards, the FTA prioritized projects that will bolster domestic bus manufacturing and stabilize the cost and hasten the delivery of new buses. Of the 117 selected projects, 47 totaling $817 million were from applicants committed to purchases of standardized buses or a combination of standard and customized models.

“Buying standardized bus models without customization can shorten manufacturing timelines and contain costs,” according to the FTA. “By prioritizing these awards, FTA is encouraging lower costs and accelerated vehicle delivery that will result in more American-built buses getting on the road faster.”

All fiscal year 2024 projects are listed online at the FTA’s website.  

The FTA’s Grants for Buses and Bus Facilities program provides nearly $2 billion through 2026 for municipal transit agencies to buy and refurbish vehicles and build or modernize bus facilities, officials said. In FY2024, about $390 million was available for grants under this program. 

The FTA’s Low-and No-Emission Program helps transit agencies buy or lease U.S.-built low- or no-emission buses and vans, make facility and station upgrades for low- or zero-emission vehicles and buy supporting equipment such as battery chargers, according to agency. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law provides $5.6 billion through 2026 for the program, a funding increase of more than 10 times compared with the previous five years. This year, approximately $1.1 billion was available for grants under the program.  

The FTA received 477 eligible project proposals totaling $9 billion in requests, officials reported.  

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