Today, TARC Celebrated the Arrival of the First 15 of 47 New Buses to Begin Service

July 1, 2021

A ribbon cutting took place this morning to celebrate the first 15 of 47 new buses to arrive at TARC and officially begin service.

The 47 buses purchased with the help of funds from the VW settlement was originally announced in 2020. Thanks to the work of local and state officials the $4.7 MM allocated from the settlement allowed TARC to meet the local match required to secure a 2019 federal investment of $17.3 MM from the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) through the Federal Transit Administration (FTA); funds used to upgrade TARC’s aging fleet with new, more fuel-efficient buses.

Speakers at the event included KY Governor Andy Beshear, KYTC Secretary Jim Gray, State Representative Ken Upchurch, Mayor Greg Fischer, and TARC Executive Director Carrie Butler.

“This is an important and needed relief for our bus fleet,” said Carrie Butler, TARC Executive Director. “These new buses will help the overall air quality of our region, while reducing emissions, and improving the reliability of service we provide.”

“While I was attorney general, we held Volkswagen accountable for deceiving Kentucky consumers, and today we’re seeing funds from that settlement improving public transit and air quality in Louisville,” said Gov. Andy Beshear. “I look forward to the time when we have all 47 new cleaner emissions buses in Louisville and 170 across the state, because with investments like these, we are making public transportation healthier and more accessible for our people.”

“Transportation plays a role in our environment and its effects on public health. That’s one reason these new, clean-diesel buses are such a great public benefit. Anything we can do to reduce emissions makes for cleaner air and a Better Kentucky,” said Secretary Jim Gray.

“Today’s ribbon cutting ceremony is a great example of how the House Majority’s budget philosophy pays off for the people of Kentucky. We are committed to working with stakeholders to reach the best possible results, as well as investing every state resource in ways that benefit our Commonwealth. The Volkswagen Settlement provided a one-time opportunity that we leveraged into a major benefit for this region. By appropriating $4.7 million of the settlement to TARC, the agency was able to take advantage of a $17.3 million federal grant,” said Rep. David Osbourne, Speaker of the House.

“This is the result of the combined efforts of the General Assembly, the Governor’s office, and the City of Louisville to provide high quality and environmentally sound public transit for Kentucky’s largest community,” said Sen. Robert Stivers, Senate President.

“For many people in Louisville, TARC buses are lifelines making it possible for them to conduct the essential business of their lives. These new buses will allow TARC to continue to do the important work for the Louisville region each day in a cleaner and fuel-efficient way,” said Mayor Greg Fischer. “Thank you to everyone at the local, state, and federal levels who have shown their support and recognition of this important need. By helping TARC get to this point, you have not only made a significant investment in the largest transit agency in the state of Kentucky, but also in the community it serves.”