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$30 million in Federal grants to pay for Proterra electric buses

Proterra Electric Bus

The Federal Transit Administration FTA recently distributed $55 million in grants to 10 transit agencies as part of a program to deploy US-made electric transit buses. More than half of that money will be going to South Carolina-based Proterra, the Greenville News reported.

Six transit agencies in five states will buy a total of 28 Proterra buses and seven charging stations – nearly $30 million in new orders, and a “tremendous validation for the company,” as Proterra CEO Ryan Popple put it. The program involved “intense competition for a lot of different technologies, but cities that specified that they wanted to deploy Proterra’s technology did very, very well,” he said.

Popple said it was too soon to say whether the new orders would prompt additional hiring. “What we’re trying to figure out right now is how we slot in the orders,” he said.

Other companies benefitting from the awards include BAE Systems and New Flyer.        

Project sponsor Project Description Funding
Sunline Transit Agency, in partnership with Southern California Association of Governments Sunline Transit Agency, in partnership with the Southern California Association of Governments, will receive funding to build and deploy five hydrogen electric hybrid fuel cell buses. BAE Systems, Ballard Power Systems and ElDorado National will team up to build the new zero-emission buses. This project will increase Sunline’s current fleet of hydrogen electric hybrid fuel cell buses and allow the agency to offer expanded transit service in the Coachella Valley area of Southern California. $ 9,803,860
San Joaquin Regional Transit District (RTD) The San Joaquin Regional Transit District (RTD), the transit provider for Stockton and San Joaquin County in California, will receive funding to purchase five Proterra battery-electric buses and a charging station. RTD plans to add the zero-emission buses and charging station to expand service and increase capacity at the Stockton Downtown Transit Center, which is the transfer point for nearly all of the RTD’s routes. $ 4,702,011
Lextran, Transit Authority of the Lexington Fayette Urban County Government Lextran, the transit authority in Lexington, Kentucky, will receive funding to purchase five Proterra battery-electric buses, one charging station and one maintenance area charging system. The zero-emission buses will replace five diesel buses that are at the end of their useful life. Lextran plans to develop a centrally charged and operated system of electric buses running out of the downtown transit center, which serves the majority of city bus routes. $ 6,003,534
Transit Authority of River City (TARC) The Transit Authority of River City (TARC), the transit agency for Louisville, Kentucky, and southern Indiana, will receive funding to deploy five Proterra battery-electric buses and a fast charging station. The zero-emission buses will increase TARC’s fleet of battery-electric buses, and the charger will work with TARC’s existing chargers to expand the area that the battery-electric buses serve. $ 3,321,250
Worcester Regional Transit Authority (WRTA) The Worcester Regional Transit Authority (WRTA), the transit provider in Central Massachusetts, will receive funding to purchase and install a Proterra charging station for its existing fleet of zero-emission battery-electric buses. The charging station has emergency power generation capability, providing power to the electric bus fleet during power outages. $ 1,002,600
Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) in Boston will receive funding to develop and deploy five 60-foot articulated New Flyer battery-electric buses on the MBTA Silver Line Bus Rapid Transit System. The new zero-emission buses will have improved performance on ice and snow-covered roads. $ 4,139,188
The Duluth Transit Authority (DTA) The Duluth Transit Authority (DTA) will receive funding to purchase and deploy six Proterra Fast Charge Electric buses, two charging stations and a maintenance facility charger. DTA will use these new, zero-emission electric buses to replace some of the oldest diesel buses in its fleet. DTA provides approximately 3 million rides per year throughout St. Louis County in northeast Minnesota. $ 6,343,890
Stark Area Regional Transit Authority (SARTA) The Stark Area Regional Transit Authority (SARTA) will receive funding to purchase and deploy five hydrogen fuel cell buses from the Integrated Product Team of Ballard Power Systems, BAE Systems, and ElDorado National. The agency will use the new zero-emission buses in a variety of operating conditions, including congested downtown streets, major urban roads and rural highways. SARTA provides more than 2.7 million rides per year throughout Stark County, Ohio. $ 8,877,405
Red Rose Transit Authority (RRTA) The Red Rose Transit Authority (RRTA) in Lancaster, PA, will receive funding to purchase 17 electric hybrid buses to replace current diesel buses that are at the end of their useful life. The new, low emission buses will be manufactured by BAE Systems and Gillig. Fourteen buses will go to RRTA, and three will go to the Berks Area Regional Transportation Authority, which is being managed by RRTA. The two agencies serve Berks and Lancaster counties in Pennsylvania. $ 2,638,400
Dallas Area Rapid Transit Authority (DART) The Dallas Area Rapid Transit Authority (DART) will receive funding to purchase and operate seven all-electric Proterra buses. DART will operate the fast charge, zero-emission buses on its downtown circulator service, D-Link. The circulator serves the city’s central business district, the Uptown area and historic Oak Cliff neighborhoods. $ 7,637,111
TOTAL $54,469,249



Source: Greenville Online, Federal Transit Administration, Green Car Congress 

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