MTC pumps $494 million into local transit

Bay Area transit agencies including the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency will be getting a huge funding boost to help with capital and equipment upgrades.

The Metropolitan Transportation Commission, which represents the Bay Area’s nine counties in transportation planning and financing, allocated $494 million to more than 20 Bay Area transit agencies in a revision of its Transportation Improvement Program.

The program is a federal requirement for the commission to list transportation projects that receive federal funding, require federal action or projects that will help with air quality. Funds in the program include $447 million from federal transportation funds and $47 million revenue from state-owned toll bridges.

Out of the $494 million, the SFMTA will get approximately $97 million to help replace 67 40-foot motor coaches and 98 60-foot motor coaches, according to commission documents.

Funding was also allocated to the SFMTA to help fund replacing the farebox system and replacing paratransit vehicles. SFBay previously reported that the transit agency was replacing the fareboxes on Muni buses last year.

BART will get approximately $50 million to support of its fleet replacement program and $17 million to work on worn out rail tracks.

AC Transit received $36 million to purchase 10 double-deck buses and replace more than 30 of its 40- and 60-foot buses, the commission said.

Commission Chair and Santa Clara County Supervisor David Cortese said in a statement that the commission was able make the revisions in the program after Congress passed last month the transportation funding bill known as the FAST Act:

“We’re also committed to putting federal transportation dollars to work right away.”