FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 12, 2020
MARTA RECEIVES $13 MILLION FEDERAL GRANT FOR CLAYTON COUNTY BUS FACILITY
Multi-Purpose Facility Will Bring Jobs to Clayton and Improve Transit Service
ATLANTA – The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has announced a $13 million grant award for the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) multi-purpose Operations and Maintenance Bus Facility in Clayton County.
The facility will include a MARTA Police precinct, training and maintenance areas, operations and administration offices, and critical bus maintenance infrastructure, including multi-fuel point, inspection station, wash and garages, supporting 31 bus routes, over 250 buses, and 50 paratransit vehicles.
“We recognized the need for this project several years ago and have been steadily advancing it since,” said MARTA General Manager and CEO Jeffrey Parker. “We are grateful to the FTA for validating its importance and are already working on real estate acquisition and design concepts.”
The facility will be strategically located in northern Clayton County and will significantly reduce what are known as deadhead costs, or the distance a bus travels without customers. It will also solve fleet capacity issues by servicing and housing 66 percent more vehicles than the next closest bus garage located in DeKalb County. That includes servicing capabilities for up to 50 articulated buses which now have to be maintained at a facility almost 20 miles away.
“The overwhelming majority of Clayton County voters who supported MARTA did so with the understanding that jobs and economic development were part of the equation,” said Clayton County Chairman Jeff Turner. “This is an important step—and one we must celebrate—on the path to this project becoming reality and bringing 650 jobs and vibrancy to Forest Park.”
The project recently received a categorical exclusion determination under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), because no negative environmental impacts are expected from repurposing a mostly empty industrial property. The project features energy efficient design such as rainwater/rinse water recycling for the bus wash and a solar canopy similar to the one at the Laredo bus garage. Close proximity to electricity infrastructure will be able to accommodate a potential future all-electric bus fleet.
The estimated total cost of the facility is $116 million with a completion date goal of 2026.