SEPTA to demo Proterra electric bus during Democratic Convention

Posted on July 22, 2016

As the nation converges on Philadelphia for the historic 2016 Democratic National Convention (DNC), the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA), Proterra and PECO will demonstrate their shared commitment to sustainable transit by providing test rides on a Proterra Catalyst® electric bus.

The project is one component of Philadelphia’s commitment to hosting the most sustainable national political convention ever.

SEPTA, along with PECO and Proterra, invites residents, delegates and visitors to SEPTA headquarters at 1234 Market Street to tour and ride SEPTA’s soon-to-be-deployed battery-electric bus on Monday, July 25 from 1 p.m.-5 p.m., and Thursday, July 28 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. In addition to the tour and demonstration, SEPTA will debut a new lobby exhibit showcasing the evolution of SEPTA’s bus fleet over the years. Those interested in seeing the bus, or taking a ride, can learn more about the event by using #SEPTAINABLE on Twitter.

SEPTA serves as a model transit agency and case study for the economic and environmental advantages of going electric, according to Proterra. To better serve the 3.9 million residents across the five counties in Southeastern Pennsylvania, SEPTA was awarded a $2,585,075 million grant from the Federal Transit Administration to purchase 25 Proterra Catalyst buses and five overhead chargers that will begin operating on two routes in South Philadelphia in 2017.

“SEPTA is looking forward to adding 25 emission-free electric buses from Proterra,” said SEPTA Board Chairman Pasquale T. Deon. “SEPTA already has one of the greenest bus fleets in the nation, with over half of our vehicles operating diesel-electric hybrids. The addition of electric buses furthers our commitment to a sustainable future for our riders and local residents.”

PECO, Pennsylvania’s largest electric and natural gas utility, has worked closely with SEPTA and Proterra to provide EV bus charging infrastructure during the DNC. PECO also will support the overhead charging installations in the coming months. In addition to this effort, PECO’s parent company, Exelon, is the official zero carbon energy provider of the 2016 Democratic National Convention.

“As more cities embrace zero-emission mass transit, we are honored to partner with SEPTA and PECO at such a historic event,” said Ryan Popple, CEO of Proterra. “Looking back on how far the electric bus industry has come over the last few years, it is very promising to see buses operating coast to coast. We look forward to gaining more support, as other cities understand that EVs offer higher performance, better economic savings and a number of environmental and public health benefits.”

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