Austin’s Capital Metro embarks on plans for all-electric fleet
The Capital Metro board has approved a contract for up to 10 electric buses, which coincides with the the start of construction of an electric smart charging facility.
Capital Metro has marked two important milestones toward Project Connect, its sustainable and connected vision for regional transportation. The Austin transport agency’s board of directors have approved a contract that will put the first electric buses on the city’s streets by the end of 2019, and have started the transformation of a former mattress warehouse into a storage and smart charging facility for future electric vehicles.
The vehicles are manufactured by Proterra, which was one of the three manufacturers that provided electric buses to the agency in 2018 for a demonstration project. An all-electric fleet is a primary goal of Project Connect and a crucial component of its plan for sustainable public transit.
Capital Metro President and CEO, Randy Clarke, said: “Capital Metro is committed to the use of innovative technology to create a more efficient, quiet and sustainable transit system. We are taking another necessary step to maintain our high quality of life for generations to come.”
Ann Kitchen, a member of the Capital Metro Board of Directors and Austin City Council, said: “Project Connect will do great things for Central Texas and for Austin. It will transform the way we get around and provide mobility options that we don’t currently have today. A huge part of that vision is an all-electric fleet of vehicles. This will create a more sustainable and better-connected future for us, our children and grandchildren.”
The new bus yard will be able to accommodate 214 buses. The agency is currently removing the former mattress warehouse in north Austin. Construction is scheduled to start in the fall of this year, and the bus yard could be ready for operations in summer 2020.