Timing is everything, and Advance Transit, a private nonprofit company providing bus and paratransit services across the Upper Valley region of Vermont and New Hampshire, took advantage of the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act to speed an upgrade to its bus garage.

Wilder, Vt.
Wilder, Vt.

In 2005, Advance applied for federal funding to build an expanded parking garage in Wilder, Vt., for its fleet of 30 buses and handicapped vans. The new garage includes a drive-through bus wash and an additional mechanical lift, as well as several energy-efficiency components such as additional insulation, a photovoltaic array and a system for harvesting rainwater and snowmelt for bus washing.

Advance Transit Garage Expansion and Renovation Project
ARRA Funds Accelerate Phased Construction
ARRA Contract Award $1.53 Million

In 2007, the Federal Transit agency provided $1.7 million to cover only phase one, the 13,600-sq-ft garage addition. Wiemann Lamphere Architects, Colchester, Vt., won the design contract in August 2008.

“The timing of ARRA was perfect for us,” says Van Chesnut, Advance Transit executive director. “We were able to incorporate the other project elements, which were deferred. We’ll get a much more energy-efficient building.”

Advance applied for stimulus funds to complete the energy-efficiency elements right after ARRA’s passage. “We realized it would cost less to build the additional elements because the trades would already be working on-site,” says Carol Hardy, Advance’s director of administration. “We received unofficial notice in early April and the grant on June 3.”

DEW Construction Corp., Williston, Vt., is the con­tractor. Work is to finish by January.