Federal Legislative Agenda 2017
Implement Capital Program to Replace Aging Transit Fleet
The City of Laredo has a bus fleet which totals forty-nine (49) heavy-duty diesel and compressed natural gas powered buses for fixed route services as well as an additional eighteen (18) Paratransit vans for the Demand Response service that complements the fixed route service. The current annual ridership within the urbanized area of Laredo is over 3.3 million passenger trips. This alongside to the severe summer temperatures produce a strain on the transit system’s aging bus fleet.
Public transportation is critical for the City of Laredo as thousands of people are transit dependent and utilize El Metro buses every day to go to work, attend business and attend school. Public Transportation alleviates traffic and congestion challenges while having a positive impact on the environment for public transportation reduces energy consumption.
The Laredo Transit Center is conveniently located in the downtown area whereas a large number of local and rural commuters connect within the transit system; in addition El Metro administration is working with the Laredo Community College (LCC) Administration to promote Transit amongst students by building accessible and conveniently located boarding stations in the South Laredo Community College Campus.
The high demand and utilization of the Laredo buses along with the summer heat has taken a significant toll on our existing equipment making replacement of buses a priority for the City of Laredo. As the buses age, additional funds are spent to maintain the buses adequately. Additional capital funding is required to purchase the needed replacement with heavy duty buses so as to continue the provision of adequate and cost effective transit service within the City of Laredo.
According to Federal Transit Administration guidelines, the useful service life expectancy of a heavy duty transit bus is twelve (12) years or five hundred thousand (500,000) miles. In 2016, the Laredo bus fleet will have fourteen (14) buses that will have exceeded this threshold; about 30% of the fixed route fleet will be obsolete and or over its life expectancy.
The City of Laredo requires $6.5 million in Federal assistance to replace its aging bus fleet. This level of Federal funding would allow the city to replace the buses that have exceeded their useful life and also allow the transit system to continue to provide cost efficient and reliable public transit service for the citizens of Laredo and those that visit Laredo. The City of Laredo is asking for Congressional support for our competitive application to the Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery Program (TIGER) Grant in the amount of $6.5 million.
Federal Transit Administration
Claudia San Miguel
Acting General Manager
Laredo Transit Management, Inc.
Laredo, Texas 78040
Phone: (956) 795-2288 ext. 234
Fax: (956) 795-2258