Merkley, Wyden Announce Over $17.5 Million In Transit Grants For Oregon

Funding will support bus and bus facility upgrades across the state

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Washington, D.C. – Oregon’s U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced a total of $17,688,999 in federal funding grants headed to Rogue Valley Transportation, Cottage Grove, and Lane Transit. 

“Our public transportation systems keep Oregonians connected and have kept vital services within reach for our communities,” said Merkley. “These grants will help make our transit districts stronger and help cut down on dangerous air pollution and improve public health. I will continue working to ensure that all transit systems across Oregon have the resources they need to get Oregonians where they’re going safely and efficiently.”

“Federal investment in public transportation is key to quality of life because it ensures Oregonians can get to work, school and community events,” said Wyden. “These resources for mass transit in the Rogue Valley and Lane County will help combat the climate crisis and are especially timely and welcome for Oregonians wanting cost-effective travel options. I’ll keep working to secure similar public transportation funds for communities throughout Oregon.”

The federal funding allocated by the Department of Transportation is intended to replace, rehabilitate and purchase buses and related equipment and to construct bus-related facilities, including technological changes or innovations to modify low- or no-emission vehicles or facilities.

A breakdown of the project locations and grant amounts can be found below:

Rogue Valley Transportation District (RVTD), Medford

Grant Amount: $12,552,523.00

Oregon Department of Transportation, Public Transportation Division, Cottage Grove

Grant Amount: $244.800.00

Lane Transit District, Eugene, Springfield

Grant Amount: $4,891,676.00

“This transformative investment will enhance operations throughout our agency for years to come,” said Julie Brown, General Manager of RVTD. “With expanded, state-of-the art facilities for our transportation personnel, we will be able to meet service demands in the Rogue Valley through 2040, all while reducing our carbon footprint and increasing opportunities for our workforce. We thank Senator Merkley for all his efforts to secure this award and the benefits it will bring to southern Oregon.”

“At South Lane Wheels, we are humbled and excited to be one of three transit providers in Oregon to be chosen for the Federal Transportation Administration’s 5339 Grant. This grant will significantly help South Lane Wheels’ goals to develop reliable and accessible rural services with the purchase of two new buses,” said South Lane Wheels Board President Timothy Steck and Executive Director Ruth Linoz. “We wish to thank our supportive partners the City of Cottage Grove and ODOT who helped us secure the funding for these critical resources for our rural services.”

“LTD will use the funds to buy additional zero-emission buses and charging equipment to replace the District’s aging diesel buses,” said Mark Johnson, LTD’s Interim General Manager. “ Zero-emission buses support LTD’s climate initiative, and help improve the air quality in the Eugene-Springfield metropolitan area.”

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