$1.5 billion available to help convert bus fleets to electric vehicles

February 13, 2024

The U.S. Department of Transportation is making $1.5 billion available to help bus-fleet owners convert to more electric or low-emission vehicles and infrastructure.

The funds come from two programs: The Low or No Emission Grant Program and the Grants for Buses and Bus Facilities Program.

The Low or No Emission Competitive Program allows state and local authorities purchase or lease zero-emission and low-emission transit buses, and also acquire, build and lease charging equipment and other facilities.

The Grants for Buses and Bus Facilities Competitive Program provides federal funds to replace, rehabilitate and purchase buses and to construct bus-related facilities, including technological advancements or innovations designed to modify low-emission vehicles and facilities.

The deadline to apply is April 25, 2024.

Funding for Low- and No-Emission and Bus and Bus Facilities programs was allocated in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law for transit projects in 46 states and territories. The law requires buses be manufactured with American parts and labor.

Notable projects funded in the Low or No Emission Competitive Program 2023 include $103 million for Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) to buy compressed natural gas fuel buses to replace older buses.

Also in 2023, Harris County’s Metropolitan Transit Authority (METRO), which serves Houston, was awarded $40.4 million to buy 40 compressed natural gas fuel buses, build a compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling station and modernize a bus maintenance facility as part of its transition to a zero-emission fleet. METRO’s climate action plan calls for the agency to buy only zero-emissions buses by 2030.

In 2023, California’s Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District received $25.5 million to buy fuel cell-electric buses and retrofit its training and education center to transition to a combined bus maintenance facility and a classroom/laboratory.

San Diego’s North County Transit District was awarded $29.3 million to buy hydrogen fuel-cell electric buses to replace older buses and to develop a workforce development program in partnership with a local college.

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority received $104 million to convert its Cinder Bed Road Bus Garage in Lorton, Virginia, to a fully battery-electric bus facility, buy battery-electric buses and develop a workforce development training program for bus operators, mechanics and first responders to ensure safe and efficient operations of its electric bus fleet.

Notable projects funded by the Grants for Buses and Bus Facilities Program in 2023 include:

  • Marin County Transit District: $31.5 million to build an electric bus facility and start a workforce training program.
  • The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency: $30.1 million to buy and install charging equipment at two bus yards to help transition its fleet to battery-electric buses.
  • California’s Santa Cruz Metropolitan Transit District: $20.3 million to buy fuel cell electric buses to replace older diesel buses, build a hydrogen fueling station, make facility upgrades to accommodate the new buses and develop a workforce training plan.

All news and information on this site is provided by the team at Strategic Partnerships, Inc. Check out this short 1-minute video that provides a quick overview of how we work with clients.

Photo courtesy of the U.S. Department of Transportation

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