October 13, 2011

Schumer, Gillibrand Announce $13.4 Million Grant for Central New York Transportation Authority; Investment Will Replace Transit Buses, Improve Transit for Commuters

Schumer, Gillibrand Announce DOT Federal Transit Administration Funding for Central New York Transportation Authority; Funds Will Improve Daily Commutes, System Efficiency

Today, U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand announced that the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) awarded a total of $13,418,960 to the Central New York Regional Transportation Authority to replace transit buses in the fleet. Schumer and Gillibrand applaud DOT for their efforts to improve quality and efficiency in New York’s transit systems.

“Safe and reliable buses and transportation are critical to the economic future of Syracuse and Central New York,” Schumer said. “This grant will improve the daily commutes to and from work for hundreds of residents, who will ride on newer and upgraded buses each day.”

“This is an important investment for Central New York's public transit system," Senator Gillibrand said. "These federal funds will help update Central New York's bus fleet, providing better service for commuters and local residents. I will keep working to secure the resources we need to support our public transit system.”

“This is great news for our customers and the community at large,” said Frank Kobliski, Executive Director for Centro. “Not only does it replace old buses, lower operating costs, and improve reliability and the customer experience, it guarantees the robust continuation of our compressed natural gas vehicle program which reduces both fuel costs and emissions in Onondaga County.  It also helps round out the bus replacement program in Utica, which Centro has been working on since Oneida County became part of the Authority 6 years ago.”

The Central New York Regional Transportation Authority will use this DOT State of Good Repair Program grant to replace buses in the fleet and make capital improvements to bus stations. This project was selected on a competitive basis through the FY 2011 State of Good Repair Program. 

The Department of Transportation’s State of Good Repair program is administered through the Federal Transit Administration. This program aims to maintain the nation’s bus and rail systems in a State of Good Repair (SGR), which is essential if public transportation systems are to provide safe and reliable service to millions of daily riders.  State of Good Repair includes sharing ideas on recapitalization and maintenance issues, asset management practices, and innovative financing strategies.  It also includes issues related to measuring the condition of transit capital assets, prioritizing local transit re-investment decisions and preventive maintenance practices.  Finally, research and the identification of the tools needed to address this problem are vital. The FTA will lead the nation's effort to address the State of Good Repair by collaborating with industry to bring the nation’s transit infrastructure into the 21st Century.