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Rider's Almanac Blog


Metro Transit awarded $4.2 million for electric buses

Posted by John Komarek | Monday, June 28, 2021 1:29:00 PM

Inside Heywood Garage, General Manager Wes Kooistra and Acting Chief of Operations Brian Funk discussed the features of this long range 40-foot electric bus with a representative from grant partner Proterra.

Recently, Metro Transit was awarded almost $4.2 million from a Low- or No-Emissions grant, a Federal Transit Administration program which can help transit agencies procure electric buses and support infrastructure.

“We thank the FTA for this opportunity to integrate more electric buses into our fleet,” General Manager Wes Kooistra said. “And we look forward to working with our project partner, Proterra as we advance a zero-emissions transit system that will better serve our communities.”

This funding helps cover the incremental cost difference of purchasing eight electric buses from grant application partner Proterra. Transit chose them after reviewing their 40-foot ZX5 Max electric bus. This garage-charged bus has a large battery capacity, allowing for long-range deployments without the need for additional charging during service.

“Proterra is proud to support Metro Transit as it accelerates the transition to clean, quiet transportation across the Twin Cities,” said John Walsh, Proterra Senior Vice President. “Together, Proterra and Metro Transit are helping set a model for how transit agencies switch to zero-emission, battery-electric transportation.”

Metro Transit will use these buses on core local routes to gain more experience. Metro Transit anticipates bus delivery and charging infrastructure inside the new Minneapolis Bus Garage in 2023.

Previously, Metro Transit received Low-No grants, including funding that helped offset the costs of bringing 60-foot electric buses to the METRO C Line and charging infrastructure to Heywood.

“This helps us take another important step in the zero-emissions bus space; however, there’s still a lot of road to cover,” Director of Bus Maintenance Matt Dake said. “But Metro Transit is up to the challenge and looks forward to collaborating with our partners.”

This FTA funding is part of a goal to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2030. Metro Transit is one of 49 projects in 46 states and territories to receive funding from a total of $182 million.