The new battery-powered buses will replace vehicles that have exceeded the recommended 12-year, 500,000-mile useful life of a bus. Photo courtesy of Proterra.

The new battery-powered buses will replace vehicles that have exceeded the recommended 12-year, 500,000-mile useful life of a bus. Photo courtesy of Proterra. 

The Greensboro Transit Authority (GTA) will become the first municipal transit system in North Carolina to have all-electric battery-powered buses, when it rolls out four new vehicles next summer, the city announced.

Greensboro has ordered four, 40-foot buses from Proterra. They will be custom manufactured at the company’s Greenville, S.C., facility.

This $3.84 million project is being funded with transportation bond funds approved by voters in November 2016, as well as federal and private grant money.

The new battery-powered buses will replace vehicles that have exceeded the recommended 12-year, 500,000-mile useful life of a bus. They produce no emissions and less noise than diesel buses. The all-electric buses require less energy to operate and reduced maintenance.

They are expected to save the City an estimated $325,000 per bus in operating costs over their lifespan. Greensboro has a five-year contract with Proterra, and expects to purchase additional buses as it works to replace its full fleet.

Later this month, construction will begin to install a fast-charging battery station at the J. Douglas Gaylon Depot. It will be able to charge the bus battery in six to 12 minutes, as the bus drops off passengers and waits for new ones to board.

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