Madison plans to buy 46 new electric buses using federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law dollars

6 Jun 2022 7:03 AM | WIPTA Admin (Administrator)

When President Biden visited Superior in March, he touted how billions of dollars will be dedicated to improving infrastructure in Wisconsin.

Tuesday morning, Madison Mayor Sayta Rhodes-Conway discussed how some of the funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will be spent.

“This is a once-in-a-generation federal investment in critical infrastructure that will make a huge difference in Madison,” Rhodes-Conway told reporters during the kickoff of Opportunity Wisconsin's 'Paving the Way' statewide tour. The event highlighted how the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will impact the Badger State.

President Biden's spending package puts $89.9 billion toward public transit over the next five years. The City of Madison will use those funds to pursue an all-electric fleet of buses.

The city expects to buy 46 brand new electric buses without contributing any additional local funding. However, that wasn't always the plan.

“We had been planning to do a mixed fleet,” Rhodes-Conway explained. “Some electric buses and some conventional diesel buses, but with the advent of the funding for electric vehicles in the infrastructure act, we're able to switch our fleet to fully electric so that we won't be buying diesel buses and locking in that pollution for years.”

The mayor also hopes the switch can lock in years of savings. She expects the shift to an all-electric fleet will:

  • Cut back on nearly a quarter-million gallons of diesel fuel every year
  • Save the city up to $125,000 in maintenance costs per vehicle over its lifetime
  • Reduce up to 135 metric tons of greenhouse gases for each bus every year

“Each of these projects represents good, family-supporting jobs for Madisonians, and each of these projects represents an opportunity to advance our city's goals around climate, equity and economic development,” Rhodes-Conway said.

The mayor said bus rapid transit routes will start operating as soon as next year, with everything fully operational by 2024.

https://spectrumnews1.com/wi/madison/politics/2022/05/17/why-madison-is-using-federal-funds-to-buy-46-new-buses

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