Flint MTA unveils two new hydrogen buses, six electric vehicles

By Madeleine Graham

The Flint Mass Transportation Authority (MTA) announced an eco-friendly expansion to its fleet this week.

On Thursday, June 27, 2024, CEO Ed Benning unveiled two hydrogen fuel cell buses and six electric vehicles (EVs) at the MTA’s fueling station at 5051 S. Dort Highway in Grand Blanc, Mich. 

The hydrogen buses were acquired through a roughly $4.335 million Federal Transit Administration grant, announced in August 2022, to support Flint MTA’s goal of emissions reduction.

In addition to the two hydrogen fuel cell buses, the MTA used the grant funding to upgrade its Grand Blanc station’s hydrogen fueling equipment. 

Flint Mayor Sheldon Neeley speaks at a Flint MTA event on June 27, 2024. (Photo by Madeleine Graham)

The idea is that the zero-emission buses will be replacing the MTA’s diesel buses that have outlived their “useful life,” a June 26 MTA press release explained, and support the vision of MTA’s “ongoing commitment to reducing harmful emissions, while building on the agency’s innovative alternative fuel technology and training program.”

According to the release, the MTA also received $407,079 in Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) Improvement program funds “to purchase and install electric charging stations and purchase the electric vehicles to further support MTA’s commitment to zero-emission.” 

The funds allowed the MTA to acquire five EVs, and Consumers Energy then donated another EV to bring the fleet to six, according to Consumers Energy product manager, Steven Harris. 

“The MTA is taking a leadership role that should inspire others to join us in making the transition to electric vehicles that protect the planet while providing emission-free services to the community,” added Lauren Snyder, Consumers Energy’s vice president of customer experience, in the press release.

Flint Mayor Sheldon Neeley, who himself served on the MTA’s Board for about 15 years before becoming mayor, shared his thoughts at Thursday’s unveiling event. 

“[The] MTA should be a model for the state and the transportation system should be supported,” Neeley said.

Author: East Village Magazine

A Non-profit, Community News Magazine Since 1976

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