Tuesday, July 16, 2024

New York’s MTA Welcomes 60 New Electric Buses, Advances Toward Zero-Emission Fleet

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In a significant step towards a greener future, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) of New York has unveiled 60 new electric buses manufactured by New Flyer. These state-of-the-art Xcelsior Charge NG buses, with a length of approximately 12 meters and a battery capacity of 525 kWh, will serve routes in Queens, Staten Island, and Brooklyn.

Governor Kathy Hochul, who inaugurated the new buses, expressed her enthusiasm, stating, “These new electric buses will play a key role in ensuring New Yorkers can get to where they’re going safely and sustainably.” The buses, subsidized with nearly $70 million in funding from the Federal Transit Administration, align with the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act’s objective to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 85% by 2050 and the MTA’s goal of operating a 100% zero-emission bus fleet by 2040.

The 525 kWh battery capacity represents the largest configuration available for these buses, which can be equipped with batteries ranging from 160 to 525 kWh. The 40-foot variant ordered provides 39 seats and accommodation for individuals with reduced mobility. The electric propulsion system allows for the recovery of up to 90% of braking energy.

MTA Chairman and CEO Janno Lieber highlighted the environmental benefits, stating, “Every mile on these buses is a mile run less on fossil fuels—a victory every day for sustainability.” The MTA, as the largest public bus system in North America, is leading the way in revolutionizing public transportation towards a greener future.

Collaborating closely with the New York Power Authority (NYPA), the MTA is rapidly expanding its charging infrastructure. NYPA President and CEO Justin E. Driscoll emphasized the progress made, stating, “An influx of 60 new buses and a rapidly increasing number of chargers will set New York City on a firm path to a clean transportation system.”

The MTA recently completed the installation of 17 pantograph fast-charging systems at the Grand Avenue Bus Depot in Queens, with more under construction at other locations. The second phase of the $188 million project will see an additional 220 pantograph charging systems deployed at several depots across the city. Upgrades to power distribution systems in collaboration with Consolidated Edison are also planned.

Looking ahead, the MTA is set to receive an additional 205 electric buses by the end of 2025, with negotiations underway for a further 265 buses to be deployed from 2027 onwards. These initiatives mark a significant step forward in New York City’s commitment to sustainable public transportation.

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