TTC purchases more hybrid buses

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The TTC took another turn on the way to a greener future with the purchase of up to 565 hybrid-electric buses.

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Toronto Councilor and TTC Commissioner Brad Bradford said the plan is to ensure the fleet of vehicles leave an ever smaller carbon footprint.

“It’s about greening our fleet, of course, and working towards the procurement of zero admission buses by 2024 and eventually having an entirely zero-emissions fleet by 2040,” Bradford said Monday.

NFI Group Inc. announced Monday that its subsidiary New Flyer Industries received new orders from the TTC for 202 Xcelsior hybrid transit buses, plus options for up to another 363 buses.

“Our partnership with TTC started 55 years … With these new buses, NFI adds the ability to meet green zone regulations through intermittent zero-emission operation, and ultimately, is helping accelerate TTC’s transition to zero-emission and building a more livable GTA.” Chris Stoddart, NFI President for North American Bus and Coach, said in a statement.

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Hybrid buses typically use less than 25% of the diesel to regular bus consumers, Bradford said.

The TTC is currently purchasing both hybrid and fully electrical buses, he said.

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“As we are building out our electrification charging infrastructure for the TTC in the interim we’re also procuring hybrid buses which will help close the gaps along the way,” he said. “In 2022 in our capital budget we made available $688 million for the procurement of 600 new buses including 300 hybrid buses and 300 all-electric buses for delivery between 2022 and 2025.”

The TTC is partnering with Toronto Hydro and Ontario Power Generation (OPG) on charging infrastructure for buses, he said.

The transit authority has been testing electric bus models from different suppliers to determine how long they can run between service intervals, what their ranges are, and how much maintenance is required, he said.

“We will move forward this summer with additional purchasing of all-electric buses based on the analysis and findings of that study,” he said. “What’s been interesting during the pandemic, while ridership has really dropped off on the subway and the streetcars, ridership has remained high on our surface transit routes.”

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