06 Mar 2020


New compressed natural gas (CNG) buses are now operating in the
Victoria Regional Transit System (British Columbia, Canada). In total, 46 New Flyer heavy-duty CNG buses and 25 Grande West Vicinity medium-duty CNG buses will be added to the fleet by the end of this summer. The addition of CNG buses will be gradual throughout the year as buses are delivered.

The 40-foot heavy-duty New Flyer buses carry 35 seated passengers and 46 standing passengers, while each medium-duty Grande West Vicinity bus (picture) can carry 24 seated passengers and 20 standing passengers. Each new bus is also equipped with a three-inch bike rack, LED destination sign and full driver door, a protective door placed on the exterior of the operator seat to protect operators from physical confrontations.

The cost of each heavy-duty CNG bus is approximately $710,000 (app. 475,000 euros), while the medium-duty CNG buses are approximately $455,000 (305.000 euros). All are funded through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP), with the Government of Canada and the Province of British Columbia each contributing 40 per cent of the cost. The Victoria Regional Transit Commission is funding the remaining 20 per cent. FortisBC supplies natural gas for BC Transit’s CNG fleets, while the CNG fueling station, located at the Langford operations and maintenance facility, is built and maintained by Clean Energy. The Victoria Regional Transit System becomes BC Transit’s fourth system operating a CNG fleet, joining Whistler, Nanaimo and Kamloops.

In July 2019 BC Transit launched a low carbon program, which committed to full fleet electrification by 2040. Within this plan, BC Transit will transition all 1,200 of its buses from traditional propulsion to zero-emission vehicles. The Canadian and British Columbia provincial government pledged $79 million (53 million euros) to BC Transit for a new electric bus fleet. BC Transit has ordered 700 buses from NFI since 1992, including New Flyer transit buses, Alexander Dennis Limited double-deck buses, and ARBOC low-floor cutaway buses.

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