TransLink says the first of 106 new “clean energy” buses will be motoring along Surrey’s streets this week and the whole fleet will be rolled out by year’s end to replace aging buses.
It announced Tuesday that the new Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) buses will make up more than half of Surrey’s 209 buses once all are in service. They feature reduced greenhouse gas emissions —up to 21 per cent less than diesel buses — and fueling them is 60 per cent cheaper than diesel, making for savings of $2.1 million each year.
According to TransLink, the CNG bus engines will run 200,000 kilometres longer than their diesel counterparts and will all be equipped with a driver safety barrier. With these new buses, more than half of TransLink’s bus fleet will run on “clean energy.” Among the fleet are 262 electric trolleys, 252 CNG and 252 hybrid diesel buses.
“These new buses represent a major renewal for our Surrey transit fleet and the benefits are many,” TransLink CEO Kevin Desmond noted. “Our customers and bus operators will enjoy a more comfortable ride with air-conditioned, quieter buses. And these new buses will also deliver substantial financial and environmental benefits with significantly reduced costs for fuel and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.”
Surrey City Councillor Tom Gill said the new buses will “complement the future light rail system to reduce road congestion while offering an efficient and environmentally friendly transportation solution.”
Harry Bains, the NDP MLA for Surrey-Newton and provincial minister of labour, welcomed the news.
“We are so excited here in Surrey for the arrival of these new, highly efficient compressed natural gas buses,” he said. “Surrey transit riders have been waiting for years for new buses. Now commuters will have the comfort of air conditioned, quieter buses which will improve the service people count on.”