Gov. JB Pritzker announced today that the Illinois Department of Transportation has been awarded a total of $24.9 million in two grants from the Federal Transit Administration for new battery-electric paratransit vehicles and paratransit vehicle replacements. The investment will help expand and improve services, providing additional transportation options, reducing harmful greenhouse gas emissions and enhancing quality of life throughout the state. With this funding, the St. Clair County Transit District will receive three vehicles and three charging stations for its ATS paratransit fleet.
Of the total $24.9 million awarded, IDOT received $12.3 million from the FTA’s Low or No Emission Vehicle Program to deploy 50 battery-electric paratransit vehicles, including associated charging infrastructure, to five large urban, four small urban and 15 rural public transit agencies. The new vehicles will expand service throughout the state with minimal impact to the environment. As required by the federal program, 5% of the award will go to workforce development and training, providing a positive impact on local economies. “
The project is supported in part by a $1 million fiscal year 2023 Congressional-Directed Spending award from Sen. Dick Durbin and Sen. Tammy Duckworth. The total $13.3 million in State of Illinois federal funds will be supplemented by $3.3 million from Illinois’ Downstate Transit Improvement Fund.
At $12.6 million, the second grant will fund a minimum of 130 standard fuel paratransit vehicles for 33 small urban and rural public transit agencies across the state. This grant is also matched with $3.1 million from Illinois’ Downstate Transit Improvement Fund. The new vehicles will preserve existing transit services essential to Illinois residents, while reducing maintenance costs and harmful impacts to the environment.
The grants are part of a $1.7 billion FTA investment to fund 130 projects in 46 states and territories, including buses, related equipment, and transit facility projects.