New York City’s MTA announced on December 15, 2019, that it has deployed the first phase of its new all-electric articulated bus fleet. The now historic 2020–2024 Capital Plan includes $1.1 billion to acquire 500 new electric buses to serve all 5 boroughs. This first phase includes 15 buses. The first electric articulated bus recently took off on one of the city’s busiest crosstown routes – the 14th Street busway.
New York pedestrians, travelers, and apartment dwellers will eventually find cleaner, fresher air for walking thanks to the zero-emissions buses. The agency’s plan to enhance and modernize the bus fleet with zero-emissions technology will deliver environmental benefits for all New Yorkers, and the city’s many visitors as well.
“We are committed to a state-of-the-art bus fleet across the entire city that is green and sustainable, and that means moving toward all-electric technology,” said NYC Transit President Andy Byford. “Our Fast Forward plan provides a blueprint on how we can work with vendors and other stakeholders to achieve that goal in all five boroughs. We’re also thrilled about the popularity of the M14 and the busway that’s helping to enable its success.”
MTA plans to acquire only electric buses beginning in 2029. At present, the MTA operates a fleet of 10 electric standard buses. The electric trial is a 3-year pilot program to test the all-electric technology. The MTA needs reliable durability of around-the-clock four-season usage.
“Our first all-electric articulated fleet represents the future of MTA bus service and I’m excited for our customers to see and experience the difference,” said Craig Cipriano, Acting President of MTA Bus Company and Senior Vice President of NYC Transit’s Department of Buses. “This is a historic day for MTA buses and the start of our journey to a zero-emissions fleet that will set the standard for the rest of the nation as its largest public bus system.”
Along with the purchase of the 15 all-electric articulated buses, MTA purchased the necessary 16 in-depot chargers and one mobile charging unit from New Flyer of America.
“While Washington is stuck in reverse on climate, New York is driving forward with clean and practical electric buses,” said Andy Darrell, New York Regional Director at Environmental Defense Fund.
“The transition to zero emission streets is happening now, and it’s very exciting,” said Lauren Bailey, Director of Climate Policy for Tri-State Transportation Campaign.
To keep the momentum rolling, MTA has put out an RfP (request for proposals) for 45 standard electric buses. These buses will be put into service starting in April 2021.
A full press release on the nose can be found here.