Red Deer Transit rolled out new compressed natural gas buses following a celebration at Civic Yards this morning.
Seventeen new compressed natural gas (CNG) transit buses will join the Red Deer Transit fleet as they are phased in over the next few weeks. The CNG buses will lessen Red Deer Transit’s impact on the environment with reduced greenhouse gas emissions, while saving on the costs of fuel and regular maintenance. Compared with Transit’s current diesel-fuelled buses, the new CNG buses use 30% less fuel per kilometre travelled and CNG fuel costs are 40% lower than diesel.
The City used $5 million of its federal Gas Tax Fund allocation, as well as $10.1 million in provincial GreenTRIP funding toward this project. The City funded approximately $600,000 from fuel and capital reserves to cover the remaining costs.
“These new CNG buses in Red Deer will help ensure residents have access to modern, clean and reliable public transit services,” said the Honourable Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities. “The Government of Canada is committed to investing in local infrastructure that helps to create eco-friendly services while providing a way for Canadians to efficiently get to where they’re going and then back home to their families at the end of the day.”
In addition to the purchase of new CNG buses, the project also included construction of a CNG fuelling station and upgrades to the bus storage facility and maintenance garage at Civic Yards. Upgrades included improvements to gas detection monitoring, electrical, heating and air handling systems to ensure the facilities were safe for staff to operate and maintain the new buses indoors.
“Investing affordable, accessible public transit just makes sense. With these new clean burning vehicles, Red Deer Transit can offer quieter frequent peak hour service, making transit a viable option for commuters,” said Kim Schreiner, MLA Red Deer North.
The project came forward as part of The City’s Environmental Master Plan, a document which outlines The City’s commitment to the environment, outlining goals and next steps for the city.
“The City has taken a significant step forward in reducing our carbon footprint,” said Mayor Tara Veer, “The CNG buses allow us to continue to provide affordable transit within our community while reducing the impact on our environment and The City’s operational budget.”
Red Deer Transit will expand the CNG fleet by replacing aging diesel buses with new CNG buses as they reach the end of their lifespan. Six new CNG paratransit buses are expected to arrive this November to replace older vehicles that have reached the end of their life cycle for the Red Deer Transit Action bus fleet.
For more information, please contact:
The City of Red Deer
Communications & Strategic Planning
The City of Red Deer