COLORADO SPRINGS — Mountain Metropolitan Transit will receive a grant awarded by the Federal Transit Administration, to improve the safety and reliability of bus systems across the country.

MMT will receive $1.6-million to purchase two battery-electric buses and charging stations.

According to Craig Blewitt, director of MMT, the federal grant will improve service on Route 23, one of the busiest routes in Colorado Springs.

Blewitt adds ridership on Route 23 has increased by five-percent over last year, and by 73-percent in the last four years.

Route 23 serves the northeast part of the community, along the Galley Road, Powers Boulevard, and Barnes Road corridors.

Blewitt says the additional electric buses will bring their total to four, thanks to some funding received from the Colorado Department of Transportation earlier this year.

MMT expects to have all the electric buses on the road by 2021.

MMT is receiving part of an 18-million dollar grant for buses and bus facilities programs, five other projects in Colorado are also receiving money.