Government of Canada launches C$250 million rural transit fund

Aug. 4, 2021
The dedicated funding for rural transit, the first for the nation, was originally announced in March as part of the government’s nearly C$15 billion transit investment.

The government of Canada launched its C$250 million (US$199.75 million) rural transit fund, a first for the nation, to help rural, remote and small communities implement transit solutions. The government reports one in five Canadians live in rural communities and these communities are responsible for nearly 30 percent of the nation’s gross domestic product.

The Rural Transit Solutions Fund was announced in March and is part of Canada’s larger dedicated transit investment of nearly C$15 billion (US$11.98 billion) that was announced in February.

“Millions of Canadians call our rural communities home – myself included. It’s essential we can get around as safely and efficiently as those in urban centers. That’s why we’re investing C$250 million across Canada through the Rural Transit Solutions Fund. Not only will this help rural Canadians get to work and access critical services more easily, it will create good jobs, grow our local economies, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help rural Canada build back better than before,” said Canada’s Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard Bernadette Jordan.

Eligible communities and organizations can submit applications to the fund with financial support provided for on-demand services, publicly-owned, electric vehicle ride shares and volunteer community car-pooling.

The range of funds awarded will include:

  • C$50,000 (US$39,949) for project planning for future capital projects or pilot projects;
  • Up to C$3 million (US$2.4 million) to help cover capital costs (e.g. purchase of a vehicle or digital platforms); and
  • Up to C$5 million (US$3.99 million) to support zero-emission transit solutions (e.g. for the purchase of zero-emission vehicles).

Additionally, a minimum of 10 percent of the total C$250 million (US$199.75 million) funding envelope for the Rural Transit Solutions Fund will be allocated to Indigenous projects being led by and for Indigenous populations and communities.

About the Author

Mischa Wanek-Libman | Group Editorial Director

Mischa Wanek-Libman serves as editor in chief of Mass Transit magazine and group editorial director of the Infrastructure and Aviation Group at Endeavor Business Media. She is responsible for developing and maintaining the editorial direction of the group and is based in the western suburbs of Chicago.

Wanek-Libman has spent more than 20 years covering transportation issues including construction projects and engineering challenges for various commuter railroads and transit agencies. She has been recognized for editorial excellence through her individual work, as well as for collaborative content. 

She is an active member of the American Public Transportation Association's Marketing and Communications Committee and serves as a Board Observer on the National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (NRC) Board of Directors.  

She is a graduate of Drake University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and Mass Communication with a major in magazine journalism and a minor in business management.