The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) is receiving a $3.6 million grant from the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) Bus and Bus Facilities Infrastructure Investment Program.
MARTA will use the funding to upgrade and replace 40-foot diesel-fueled buses with 60-foot Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) buses used on high capacity ridership bus routes in central and south DeKalb County. The new, environmentally friendly buses, will be stationed in central DeKalb County at the Laredo Bus Depot in Scottdale. They will be used to improve and enhance service on MARTA Route 121, which connects riders to the Avondale Station and the city of Stone Mountain. The bus route travels the Ponce de Leon Avenue corridor and is one of DeKalb’s most heavily used east/west travel routes.
“This grant will allow MARTA to provide more service in DeKalb County, along one of our busiest routes,” said MARTA Board of Directors DeKalb County representative Frederick L. Daniels.
The new buses are expected to be rolling on Route 121 soon. Additional service expansions are being called for in the DeKalb County Master Transit Plan under development by county CEO Michael Thurmond’s administration with significant public and rider input.
“As we build out More MARTA across the region, we will continue to partner and enhance existing service options with the jurisdictions in our core service areas. Our goal is to simply become and maintain the status of being one of the best transit and transportation systems in the nation,” said MARTA General Manager and CEO Jeffrey Parker.
The Georgia Regional Transportation Authority (GRTA) was similarly awarded $3.6 million for upgrading its park-and-ride lots as well as support construction of a new operations and maintenance facility along I-20.