Baker, Warren Take Part in Groundbreaking on Electric MBTA Bus Facility in Quincy

Gov. Charlie Baker and Sen. Elizabeth Warren were among those on hand for the groundbreaking on a new MBTA facility in Quincy, Massachusetts, that is expected to be completed in 2024

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Some of Massachusetts' top elected officials met in Quincy Monday to participate in the groundbreaking of a new MBTA bus maintenance facility.

MBTA General Manager Steven Poftak described it as "the first garage in our system to accommodate a fleet of zero-emission battery electric buses."

Officials used the opportunity to announce how billions of dollars in federal infrastructure money will be spent in the coming years in Massachusetts.

Gov. Charlie Baker said there would be "an increase to Massachusetts of about $9.5 billion over the next five or six years."

Baker says that total includes $5.4 billion for roads and bridges, $2.2 billion for public transportation and $1.3 billion for environmental infrastructure, which the governor said, in particular, had been underfunded for decades.

"We have a ton of catching up to do there," he said.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren called it a "once-in-a-generation opportunity" to address major infrastructure challenges impacting the environment.

"Because we know the that same things that cause climate change also create severe public health problems disproportionately in Black and brown and most vulnerable communities," Warren said.

The senator says diesel buses are often the biggest polluters in those neighborhoods, as Mayor Thomas Koch says has been so evident on Hancock Street in Quincy.

"There's a bus in front of you spewing diesel fumes, and your ventilation system is sucking it into the car, and how disgusting it is," Koch said. "This is going to completely change that experience."

The building is scheduled to open in late 2024.

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