Metro Transit using rainwater to clean busses at new garage

When Metro Transita new North Loop garage opened this past spring a notable feature was using rainfall to keep the busses clean.

Every weekday at every Metro Transit bus garage each bus gets a quick run through the wash before getting parked for the night.

But at the new garage in Minneapolis a 40,000 gallon water tank captures all the rain that falls on the roof.

The massive roof means about a quarter-inch rainfall fills the tank. Roughly 13,000 gallons of water is used each day. 

The pipes that would otherwise take rainwater into the storm sewers and into the Mississippi River are instead reused at the facility, which also uses solar walls to help heat the building.

Metro Transit estimates the captured rainwater is between 30% to 40% of what is needed for a full bus wash.

Officials say as other bus garages are built or updated, they will also include the same system.