The Chicago Transit Board today approved an ordinance to amend CTA’s 2011-2015 Capital Improvement Program (CIP) to include grants the agency has received, including $37.4 million from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) State of Good Repair Funds (SOGR) and $11.1 million in Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality funds (CMAQ). The ordinance increases the capital budget from $599.5 million to $649.7 million.
“It is imperative that CTA make investments in its infrastructure in order to continue to provide quality service to the people who depend on the agency for their transportation needs,” said CTA President Richard L. Rodriguez. “The public transportation system in Chicago is crucial to the economic vitality of the region and capital funding is needed to ensure we are properly maintaining and improving these assets.”
“With limited capital resources, CTA must find ways to make the repairs and upgrades necessary to operate a system in which some of the infrastructure is nearly 100 years old,” said Chicago Transit Board Chairman Terry Peterson. “CTA has aggressively applied for available grants and the receipt of these funds will be used to make much needed repairs while allowing the agency to direct capital dollars to other essential improvements.”
The SOGR funding provides $32 million for a bus facilities rehabilitation program which CTA will use to upgrade garages built between 1908 and 1993. Work includes improving roofs, hoists, inspection pits, electrical systems and other essentials at existing bus garages and bus heavy maintenance facilities.
The remaining $5.4 million in SOGR funds will be used for bus facility assets relating to systems and equipment such as migrating current bus facility capital asset information to a central database, performing an engineering condition assessment field study and developing a modeling tool using the data to prioritize bus capital investments.
The CMAQ funding will be used to retrofit more than 400 New Flyer buses with engines that have diesel particulate filters and are in line with the engines on other CTA buses. By having all its bus fleet with the same engine configurations, CTA is able to reduce costs by eliminating the need to purchase and store different parts and improve efficiency in maintenance and repairs. The engines also will help CTA continue to reduce emissions.
CTA has received more than $687.6 million in grant funds in 2010 and 2011.
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