Maine will receive a $7.1 million federal grant to modernize the Lincolnville and Islesboro ferry terminals to accommodate a new hybrid-electric ferry that will reduce pollution and improve transportation on Penobscot Bay, according to Maine’s congressional delegation.

The terminals serve the ferry that runs between Lincolnville and Islesboro, one of six island communities served by the Maine State Ferry Service. It’s the service’s busiest route, carrying about 600 year-round residents, 180,000 walk-on passengers and more than 80,000 vehicles annually.

Built in 1959, the terminals must be upgraded before the plug-in hybrid ferry is delivered in 2027, the delegation said. The vessel will operate primarily on battery power, supported by a diesel backup system.

The grant will fund the installation of battery charging infrastructure and expanded docking space, among other improvements. It’s part of more than $33 million awarded to Maine from a new program under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that aims to help ferry systems transition to climate-friendly technologies.

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