The Worcester (Mass.) Regional Transit Authority (WRTA) was recently awarded a $4.4 million Federal Transit Authority Clean Fuels grant to purchase buses from Proterra Inc, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions. The transit authority will use the grant money to replace three of its twelve old diesel buses with Proterra's zero-emission all-electric transit buses.
The grant award, which was announced last week by U.S. Rep. James P. McGovern, U.S. Senator John Kerry and U.S. Senator Scott Brown, will also pay for the installation of a Proterra on-route Charge station at the WRTA's Union Station transfer center and a shop charger at the new maintenance and operations facility.
The WRTA estimates that replacing these three buses will eliminate 53 tons of harmful emissions and reduce petroleum consumption by more than 23,000 gallons per year, while reducing operating costs by more nearly $500,000.
Proterra's EcoRide BE35 battery-electric buses recharge in less than 10 minutes, ready to serve the community with clean electric powered bus service. The 35-foot long buses are made of lightweight composite materials and are powered with state of the art battery technology. As a result, the buses have zero emissions, run virtually silent and are 500 percent more fuel efficient than diesel buses.
"The WRTA is looking forward to introducing the new all-electric buses to enhance our fleet in keeping with the goals of doing our part to become a greener community," said WRTA administrator Stephen O'Neil. "The all-electric buses run quieter, cleaner and more efficiently than older model diesel buses and have been designed to improve air quality, reduce the WRTA's carbon footprint and the Agency's dependence on fossil fuel.
Other cities anticipated to roll-out Proterra buses in the next six months include Stockton, Calif.; San Antonio, Texas; Tallahassee, Fla. and Seneca, S.C.
"Proterra is proud to work with some of the most progressive transit agencies out there," said David Bennett, CEO, Proterra Inc. "These agencies understand the very real and positive bottom-line impact battery-electric buses can have on the environment and on their overall operating budgets. We are thrilled to add WRTA to our impressive and growing customer roster."