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Connect Transit Given Capital Grant For Electric Buses

Connect Transit buses
Connect Transit will receive state money to buy four 35-foot-long electric buses and to improve bus stops.

The state transportation department is giving Bloomington-Normal's public bus system $9.9 million.

It's part of the governor's Rebuild Illinois capital program. Connect Transit says the money will buy four 35-foot-long electric buses, and also pay for an additional 90 bus stops that are compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. 

“Transit in our downstate communities can be a lifeline for getting to work or school, a doctor’s appointment or a trip to the grocery store,” said Acting Transportation Secretary Omer Osman. “This funding through Rebuild Illinois means these providers finally will have the resources they need to improve service in communities that have not seen this type of investment for many years.”

“We are very pleased and gratified to receive this additional funding commitment from the State of Illinois. This takes us one step closer toward realizing our dream of a new Downtown Bloomington Transfer Center,” stated transit board Chairman Ryan Whitehouse.

The Rebuild Illinois grant follows a $10 million federal grant to Connect Transit in August to move the transfer center project forward, and a $931,000 federal CARES Act grant in July for pandemic relief.

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WGLT Senior Reporter Charlie Schlenker has spent more than three award-winning decades in radio. He lives in Normal with his family.