Press Release7/29/2019

COTA to Receive $2.6 Million in Federal Funding to Invest in Electric Buses & Infrastructure

The U.S. Department of Transportation has awarded the Central Ohio Transit Authority (COTA) a $2.6 million Infrastructure for Rebuilding America grant to use toward COTA’s transition to diesel-free buses by 2025.

The funds are part of the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) Low or No Emission (Low-No) Program. COTA plans to use the grant to help replace diesel buses with electric buses and also toward infrastructure upgrades, such as electric charging stations.

“This grant expedites the transition of mass transit to electrification right here in the heart of the nation’s largest mobility ecosystem,” said COTA President/CEO Joanna M. Pinkerton. “We appreciate the Federal Transit Administration’s support of our commitment to a low- or no-emission fleet by 2025 through this grant, and will continue to apply sustainable, eco-friendly practices to reduce emission as growth in our region increases demand on our system.”

COTA’s bus fleet is currently comprised of 57 percent low-emission vehicles, including 178 compressed natural gas (CNG) buses and 6 hybrid-electric buses. The authority is currently purchasing 28 CNG buses per year to become diesel-free by 2025. COTA plans to add at least 10 electric buses to its fleet by 2021.

As part of the grant, an additional electric bus will be purchased to assist New Albany to expand their SmartRide Program, which provides public transportation to connect Central Ohioans to 15,000 jobs in the New Albany Business Park Area.