USDOT awards over $76 million to MATA to modernise city’s bus system
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s new funding will allow the Memphis Area Transit Authority to modernise its transit system, while providing riders with more reliable and sustainable bus services.
Credit: Memphis Area Transit Authority
Congressman Steve Cohen, a senior member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, has announced that the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) will provide the Memphis Area Transit Authority (MATA) with two grants totalling $76,378,905 to revitalise the city’s bus system.
One grant for $54,000,000 from the Buses and Bus Facilities Program will support the purchase of new vehicles and the construction of a new maintenance facility. The second grant for $22,378,905 from the Low-No Program will support MATA in transitioning its fleet to clean electric buses and procuring charging stations for the Crosstown Corridor Connector.
Congressman Cohen said: “This substantial funding will transform the way Memphians live and get to work. It will provide riders with more convenient and reliable transit options while reducing congestion, catalysing growth and building a cleaner, more modern transit system. It is a major investment in our community, and I’m proud to have supported and pushed for this critical funding.”
Congressman Cohen has been in close contact with USDOT and MATA regarding these competitive grants for Memphis. Funding for both programmes was increased in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which was signed into law in November 2021.
The purpose of the Buses and Bus Facilities Program is to assist in the financing of buses and bus facilities capital projects, including replacing, rehabilitating, purchasing or leasing buses or related equipment, and rehabilitating, purchasing, constructing or leasing bus-related facilities.
On the other hand, the Low-No Program aims to support the transition of the nation’s transit fleet to the lowest polluting and most energy efficient transit vehicles. The programme provides funding to state and local governmental authorities for the purchase or lease of zero-emission and low-emission transit buses, including acquisition, construction and leasing of required supporting facilities.
In early 2022, Congressman Cohen also announced that the Biden-Harris Administration has recommended an additional $46 million for the Memphis Innovation Corridor Project, a proposed eight-mile bus rapid transit route connecting downtown to the University of Memphis and providing convenient and reliable access to jobs, education, health services and civic centres. The project includes one mile of exclusive bus lanes, off-vehicle fare collection, transit signal priority and streetscape and pedestrian improvements.
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