For immediate release: August 30, 2023

FTA delivers $104 million grant to convert Metro’s Cinder Bed bus garage to exclusively serve electric buses

FTA grant check
Metro today received a $104 million grant from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA), delivered at a celebration at the Cinder Bed Road Bus Garage which will be converted to exclusively serve battery-electric buses with funds from the grant. 

The Low or No Emission Vehicle grant will help Metro achieve its accelerated timeline to transition nine bus garages and nearly 1600 buses to zero-emission by 2042. FTA Deputy Administrator Veronica Vanterpool delivered the grant at a celebration that included U.S. Congressman Gerry Connolly, Fairfax Board of Supervisors Chair Jeff McKay, Metro Board Chair Paul C. Smedberg, and Metro General Manager and Chief Executive Officer Randy Clarke. 

Metro is partnering with Fairfax County on the conversion of the Cinder Bed Road facility, a portion of which is planned to be used by the county to house and charge their all-electric Bus Rapid Transit service running from Fort Belvoir to Huntington Metrorail Station by 2030. The grant will also support the purchase of battery-electric Metrobuses for the region, and workforce development and training. 

“FTA is proud to support WMATA’s renovation of the Cinder Bed Bus Garage as it moves toward achieving its ambitious goal to replace its entire fleet with electric buses that run on greener and cleaner fuel sources,” said FTA Administrator Nuria Fernandez. “Riders and residents in the Capital region can be proud that WMATA is leading the charge.” 

“This grant is a clear example of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law at work,” said Congressman Connolly. “Historic investments like this one will create good paying jobs in our community and promote sustainability. Investing in better, cleaner transit options for commuters will improve our air quality, cut congestion, and contribute to the fight against climate change. With this grant, we are improving the quality-of-life for all residents of Northern Virginia.” 

“WMATA is advancing the environmental goals of Fairfax County and the region by transforming the Cinder Bed operations and maintenance facility to accommodate a zero emissions fleet, including Richmond Highway Bus Rapid Transit electric buses,” said Fairfax County Board Chairman Jeff McKay. “This venture is mutually beneficial to WMATA and the County because it provides the critical infrastructure that will support the long-term success of public transit services in Northern Virginia.” 

“This federal award for Cinder Bed Road is a significant step toward achieving the Metro Board’s goal of transitioning to an entirely zero-emissions bus fleet as quickly as possible,” said Metro Board Chair Paul C. Smedberg. “I’m excited to see electric buses leaving this garage to provide our customers with safe, clean, and efficient transit, and look forward to partnering with Fairfax County on their all-electric Bus Rapid Transit service out of this facility.” 

“Transitioning our bus fleet to zero-emissions vehicles will provide customers with a better experience and help Metro achieve its mission to be a climate change solution for the National Capital Region,” said Metro General Manager and Chief Executive Office Randy Clarke. “We’re thrilled to accelerate our transition to zero-emission buses thanks to the support of the FTA, and we look forward to seeing electric buses serving our customers in the near future.” 

This summer, Metro received delivery of the first two of 12 battery-electric buses as part of our first phase of zero-emission bus deployment. The buses will operate out of the Shepherd Parkway Bus Division, located in an Opportunity Zone, encompassing low-income and economically distressed communities with a variety of routes across DC, Maryland, and Virginia. 

The federal grant helps extend the reach of local and state dollars invested in the National Capital Region's transit systems and is pivotal for Metro to transition to a fully zero-emission fleet. This includes the purchase of new buses, supporting charging infrastructure and upgrades to bus facilities. 

In addition to Cinder Bed Road, Metro’s new Northern and Bladensburg bus garages, which are under construction, are being built to support zero-emission buses, as will the new Western Bus Garage being planned. 

To learn more about Metro's zero-emission bus initiatives go to our Zero-Emission Bus Page on