Burlington may have its first electric buses on the road inside two years


Published September 23, 2022 at 12:47 pm

Similar to this one in Brampton, Burlington may have electric buses on city streets by 2024.

Electric buses may be coming to Burlington as soon as 2024.

At Tuesday’s council meeting, councillors unanimously approved staff’s recommendation to develop a Zero-Emission Bus Fleet Implementation and Rollout Plan by engaging with the Canadian Urban Transit Research and Innovation Consortium (CUTRIC) and CUTZEB (CUTRIC’s not-for-profit arm).

Over the past two years, Burlington Transit staff have worked with CUTRIC, modelling the City’s route network to analyze the potential opportunity for electrification of its bus fleet by participating in CUTRIC’s Pan-Canadian Electric Bus Pilot Demonstration Project Phase II.

CUTRIC will complete the Zero-Emission Bus Fleet Implementation and Rollout Plan, which will include:

  • Assessment of the current state
  • Evaluation of electrical power services
  • Review of operational goals and scenario development
  • Comparative analysis of available vehicles and charging systems
  • Infrastructure gap analysis and requirements identification
  • Implementation planning and costing

CUTZEB is planning to issue a request for proposal to procure electric buses and charging infrastructure in 2023. Once an award is made to the preferred vendors, then Burlington Transit would have the option to purchase this equipment through the joint procurement.

The total cost of the Zero-Emission Bus Fleet Implementation and Rollout Plan is $92,500 and will use funds already received from the Provincial Gas Tax.

“This report is great news for our city and it’s very exciting to see the possibility of electrification of our transit fleet within reach,” said Burlington Mayor Marianne Meed Ward.

“We’re joining a joint procurement process to acquire electric buses as soon as 2024. In the meantime, we’re authorizing a study to do an overview of our infrastructure needs to make this happen and determine where the charging stations will need to go.”

As part of the 2024 Capital Budget, Burlington Transit is planning to request the purchase of four electric buses and the necessary infrastructure to replace four diesel buses that are due to be retired.

This would allow transit to launch a small pilot of electric buses in 2024 and bring the city closer to achieving the goals in the City’s Climate Action Plan.

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