As part of the Ohio Department of Transportation’s (ODOT) three-year $150 million pledge to assist Ohio’s transit agencies, ODOT is directing $15 million to the purchase this year of more than three dozen "Clean and Green" buses and transit vehicles across the state.
"The demand for greener transportation choices continues to rise, especially among Ohio’s next generation," said ODOT Director Jolene M. Molitoris. "In Ohio’s cities, nearly two-thirds of all bus trips are work-related, providing young people with access to education, first-time jobs, homes and a quality way of life."
In all, ODOT will help transit agencies purchase 38 new vehicles, including electric-diesel hybrid buses, cleaner ultra-low sulfur diesel vehicles, and buses that run on biodiesel or compressed natural gas.
In October, ODOT identified additional federal transportation dollars made available through significant project savings and supplementary federal resources. With those flexible federal funds, ODOT targeted $50 million to make immediate investments in transit and pledged similar funding in each of the next two fiscal years.
Under this 21st Century Transit Partnerships for Ohio’s Next Generation, the new funding is helping to preserve existing transit services by providing $25 million in operational support, $15 million in clean and green new vehicles, and $10 million for innovative new services — all to better connect Ohioans to job centers and new opportunities.
For the current fiscal year, ODOT’s Office of Transit has already allocated the $25 million in operational assistance and is currently accepting applications to fund $10 million in innovative new services.
As part of budget information submitted this week to the Ohio Legislature, ODOT identified similar levels of funding — $50 million in each state fiscal year 2012 and 2013 — to continue this important investment in Ohio’s transit system.