Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) in the US is set to receive $1.24bn in American Rescue Plan Act funds, enabling it to continue offering services and maintain jobs as the pandemic affects the economy.

Supporting more than 12 million residents of Los Angeles, Metro will use the finances to pay off the costs incurred during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

Commenting on the grant, Metro board chair and Los Angeles County supervisor Hilda L Solis said: “Metro will use the America Rescue Plan Act funds to benefit riders, including seniors, persons with disabilities, low-income and transit-dependent individuals by supporting bus and rail operations and maintenance critical activities that will ensure our transit system operates safely, efficiently, reliably, and sustainably.”

American Rescue Plan Act comprises $1.6bn for the Capital Investment Grant (CIG) Program for supporting transit capital projects currently on course across the US.

The CIG Program is the federal government’s main programme, which backs the construction of new transportation projects in the country.

It covered more than $275m for four Metro transit capital projects, including $59m for the Regional Connector Transit Project and $66.5m for the Westside Purple Line Extension Section 1.

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The programme also includes $93.5m for the Westside Purple Line Extension Section 3 and $58.5m for the Westside Purple Line Extension Section 2.

Metro CEO Stephanie N Wiggins added: “This critical help from Congress is the reason we were able to keep most of our service running for essential trips during the pandemic and all of our workers employed.

“Congress also had the foresight to provide funds so we could continue construction of capital projects that will serve our region for many decades to come. We truly appreciate this help from Congress and the White House that is making a difference for everyone in our region.”

In March last year, the Metro board of directors approved contracts with two private sector teams for pre-development work on the Sepulveda Transit Corridor Project.