Metro Transit receives federal grant to upgrade buses

Metro awarded nearly $3.8 million
Metro Transit receives federal grant to upgrade buses

Madison Metro Transit has received almost $3.8 million to go toward upgrading buses.

The Madison bus system was awarded the grant as part of a $787 million State of Good Repair federal grant and will use the funding to purchase diesel buses.

“There has been a regular decline in discretionary funding, and Metro is glad to be receiving this and will be using it to stay on top of bus replacement in an orderly fashion,” said Metro General Manager Chuck Kamp.

Metro purchased 15 buses last year with the State of Good Repair grant last year, and Kamp said money for 2013 will help Metro purchase 16 buses next year.

“Metro will use this money to help replace 16 buses in its fleet,” Kamp said. “Normally, Metro replaces 15 buses. With service level and ridership levels increasing, Metro is trying to now stay on a 16-bus replacement cycle.”

“Each diesel bus costs approximately $367,000,” Kamp said. “We applied for additional funding for hybrid buses, but didn’t receive all of the money we applied for. Each hybrid bus costs an additional $200,000 to upgrade. Our priority is buses, so, regardless, we are extremely appreciative of the grant money we’ve received.”

There is a required 20-percent local match. With the grant, local match and remaining fixed-guideway funding, Metro will be able to purchase 16 buses.