MST Wins Grant for Wireless Electric Trolley
September 13, 2012
With a $1.7 million grant from the Federal Transit Administration, Monterey-Salinas Transit will purchase the first wireless public transit vehicle in California.
The wirelessly charged electric trolley uses a power supply small enough to support round trips with regular, brief wireless recharging. Traditionally, electric buses would need to be plugged in overnight.
The technology was developed by Utah State University’s Energy Dynamics Laboratory and is being marketed by spin-off company Wireless Advanced Vehicle Electrification (WAVE).
In partnership with the city of Monterey and the Monterey Bay Aquarium, MST has been providing trolley service connecting downtown Monterey to Cannery Row for 20 years. They've transported over 2 million passengers on the route.
“We hope this new technology will power the future of the MST trolley in Monterey, leading MST and the transit industry to a future of greater energy independence and less reliance on fossil fuels," MST CEO and General Manager Carl Sedoryk said in a statement.
Sedoryk hopes to have the trolley route up and running in 2014. Now that MST's secured funding, they'll begin working with the city of Monterey on street permits and approvals. The remainder of the $2 million project will be funded by California transportation development toll credits.
“Downtown Monterey and the historic Cannery Row will now be connected using state-of-the-art green technology,” Congressman Sam Farr, D-Carmel, said in a statement. Farr, along with senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein, helped secure the FTA grant.