Pittsburgh Regional Transit Awarded $11.3M in Funding to Support Transit Improvements

The Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission (SPC) is awarding Pittsburgh Regional Transit (PRT) $11,389,925 in grant funding to support two separate transit improvement projects. The two projects are:

  • The next phase of the PRTX University Line Bus Rapid Transit project, which will extend BRT from Oakland to Squirrel Hill, will receive $7,418,343 in funding to support transit stations and rider amenities along Forbes Avenue from Craig Street to Murray Avenue, and the
  • Microtransit Pilot Project will receive $3,971,582 in funding to support smaller scale transit solutions in five communities.  

“We are focused on modernizing, increasing accessibility, and meeting our riders needs,” said Katherine Kelleman, CEO of Pittsburgh Regional Transit. “The first phase of construction on the University Line BRT has already started and our Microtransit Pilot Project will deliver affordable, accessible transit for residents living in Tarentum Borough, Brackenridge Borough, Harrison Township, the City of McKeesport, and Versailles Borough. We rely on partners like SPC to help us with our planning needs, and we’re grateful that this funding is going to support two innovative projects.”

SPC recently completed the selection process for its discretionary competitive grant program which selects certain projects in the region to receive federal funding. The organization has a selection committee that reviews grant applications submitted from counties and municipalities within its coverage area. The grant applications are then competitively reviewed and scored to ensure that these projects adhere to federal standards.        

As the region’s Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), Local Development District (LDD), and Economic Development District (EDD), SPC receives an allotment of federal funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation that it can award to entities that have improvement projects which qualify under three areas: Congestion Mitigation Air Quality program (CMAQ), Carbon Reduction program (CRP), and the Transportation Alternatives Set Aside (TASA) program.

The CMAQ and CRP programs accept applications from counties and municipalities that have projects which will help to improve air quality and reduce traffic congestion. Eligible initiatives under these two programs can include pedestrian and bicycle facility projects, transit improvement programs, electric vehicles and charging stations, congestion reduction and traffic flow improvements, and diesel engine retrofitting/replacements. The TASA program accepts applications from counties and municipalities for projects that support transportation alternatives, including pedestrian and bicycle facilities, improving access to public transportation, enhanced mobility, recreational trails, safe routes to schools, and environmental mitigation. 

“PRT is focused on forward-thinking transit projects that will help propel our region forward,” said  Rich Fitzgerald, Executive Director of the Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission. “The BRT and Microtansit Pilot Project are just two examples of how PRT is innovating its services for riders. Its buses, light rails, inclines, and paratransit services already deliver more than 30 million rides annually, and our organization is here to support PRT with its ongoing efforts to increase accessibility in communities that need it the most.”

Initiatives like PRT’s transit improvement projects reflect the vision of SPC’s Long Range Transportation Plan which strives to ensure that the region is connected and has multimodal mobility for all. It also aligns with SPC’s Transportation Demand Management (TDM) Strategic Action Plan. TDM focuses on the decisions that people and businesses make every day about travel, and involves providing travelers with information, options, and incentives that expand travel choices.

Media Inquiries: Caitlin O’Connor
Cell: 412-719-5366


About Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission:
The Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission (SPC) is the federally designated metropolitan planning organization (MPO), local development district (LDD), and economic development district (EDD) serving 10 counties. The organization’s coverage area includes Allegheny including the City of Pittsburgh, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Lawrence, Washington and Westmoreland counties. It is responsible for planning and prioritizing the use of state and federal transportation funding and establishing economic/workforce development priorities for the region.