The California Department of Transportation has awarded more than $190 million to 136 public transportation projects in the state that aim to cut pollution and create more affordable transportation options.
Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the funding approval, which is made possible by the California Climate Investment program.
“More clean and affordable transportation is coming to California, cutting pollution and making it easier for folks to get around,” Newsom said in a news release. “These programs are key to our climate goals – building charging stations, getting more EV buses on the roads, and reducing costs for public transit.”
One of the biggest recipients is LA Metro, which was awarded $52 million to fully electrify bus routes in Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley.
Funds will be used to purchase and install charging infrastructure in the North San Fernando Valley Transit Corridor.
In Orange County, $9.7 million will be used to build a new fueling station to support 50 hydrogen-powered buses, with the majority of the funding directly benefiting disadvantaged and low-income neighborhoods, the Governor’s Office said.
About $17.5 million will be spent in the San Francisco area to give free transit rides to low-income seniors, youth and people with disabilities.
A pilot program with Metrolink will provide free passes for secondary, college and university students, which officials hope will attract new riders and turn occasional rail riders into regulars. That program was awarded about $4 million.
Free or reduced fare programs are among the biggest initiatives of California’s Low Carbon Transit Operations Program. This year alone, 31 projects to provide free or reduced transit options have received some funding through the program.
In addition to construction projects and pilot programs in the major California cities, the state has also awarded some cash to create a new bus route through an underserved community in the southern part of Fresno, and about a half-million dollars will be used to install electric chargers and convert a fleet of buses into zero-emissions vehicles in rural Butte County.
For more information about the projects across the state that have been awarded funding, click here.