(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) St. Joseph has received over $4 million of federal funding to replace several buses that have exceeded their useful life.
The funding was provided by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) which announced on Friday their plan to fund about $264 million in project selections to improve the safety and reliability of nationwide bus systems.
In a press release from the FTA, the administration said a total of 139 projects in 52 states and territories will receive funding from FTA’s Buses and Bus Facilities Infrastructure Investment Program.
“FTA is proud to help bring new and rehabilitated buses, facilities, and equipment to communities across the country,” FTA Acting Administrator K. Jane Williams, said. “This marks a step forward in improving mobility for the millions of Americans who travel by bus to work, school, healthcare, and other services.”
The FTA said the projects will aim to replace, rehabilitate, and purchase buses and related equipment as well as projects to purchase, rehabilitate and construct bus-related facilities, such as buildings for bus storage and maintenance.
The City of St. Joseph will receive $4.725 million to replace several buses, and MoDot was awarded $3.6 million to replace vehicles in their 5311 program.
All together, the FTA said the money should replace between 80-100 vehicles.
In a statement provided by the FTA, St. Joseph's Transportation Planner, Chance Long, said the funding is important to the people in the community who use the transit system.
“Almost all of the buses have reached or exceeded their useful life and often have issues breaking down. This funding will help to replace older buses and improve the dependability and efficiency of the transit system. We are grateful to receive the funding and look forward to new buses running throughout the city,” Long said.
This comes shortly after St. Joseph's City Council approved the spending of $4 million to replace nine new buses at a council meeting on March 27th.
City transit staff said 18 of the city's 20 buses they currently operate have logged more than 500,000 miles and are more than 13 years old.
The buses are expected to hit the streets in 2019.