FTA awards SORTA $10 million grant for new green-diesel and electric buses

The Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority (SORTA) is pleased to announce the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) will award the agency $10.1 million in grant funds toward modernizing and greening the Metro and Access fleets of transit and paratransit vehicles.

“One of the ways we’re reinventing Metro is by modernizing our fleet to include low-to-no emission vehicles that lessen our reliance on traditional diesel fuel,” said SORTA CEO and General Manager Darryl Haley. “Federal funds like these are critical in driving that mission and expanding reliable and sustainable public transportation throughout our community.”

The grant comes from the FTA’s Buses and Bus Facilities Grant program for aging transit vehicles and infrastructure and will provide Metro necessary funds to purchase new buses powered by electricity or biofuel.

Over the last three years, Metro has worked aggressively to modernize our fleet by replacing our aging buses. Since 2019, we have added 94 new buses with new amenities like charging ports, free Wi-Fi and video safety monitors. This grant will help extend those modernization efforts by allowing us to introduce more fuel-efficiency into the fleet while at the same time reducing the number of buses in circulation past their useful life.

A new bus costs approximately $600,000 for standard diesel buses and up to nearly $1 million for electric buses. Metro currently has 357 buses in its fleet.