TDOT receives $16 million federal transit grant

NASHVILLE –The Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) has been awarded a $16.2 million grant for buses and bus facilities by the U.S. Department of Transportation. TDOT applied for the grant on behalf of 10 transit agencies in coordination with the Tennessee Public Transportation Association. The grant will assist these agencies with the replacement of vehicles that have exceeded their useful life.

“These transit agencies provide services in 91 of Tennessee’s 95 counties, and they play a vital role in providing transportation to jobs, schools, and medical appointments,” TDOT Commissioner Clay Bright. “I’m proud TDOT could partner with these entities to successfully compete for these funds.”

The grant funds will pay for 25 buses and 279 demand response vehicles. TDOT will provide 25% of the total project cost through revenues generated by the IMPROVE Act. The participating transit agencies will provide 10% of the cost, with federal dollars funding 65%.  Tennessee received one of the top eight highest-funded awards out of 94 recipients. 

Across all transit agencies in Tennessee, 54% of vehicles are currently past their useful life. This grant will reduce the number to 31%. Having new vehicles will allow these organizations to focus more on preventative maintenance activities rather than short term repairs on aging buses. The new vehicles will be subject to asset management plans that outline recommended maintenance and procedures for operation and inspection.

In 2018, Tennessee’s public transit agencies provided over 30 million trips and traveled nearly 54 million miles. More than 82,000 people use transit services daily. For more information on transit services provided across Tennessee, please visit

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