Inbound Overland and Shoshone is closed. No temp stop has been placed.
VRT unveils new electric buses
Valley Regional Transit (VRT) has introduced the Treasure Valley to a new era of public transportation. On September 14, VRT unveiled four new Proterra ZX5 battery-electric buses. The new buses build on VRT’s history of embracing innovative technology that improves the environment and the rider experience.
“Battery-electric buses offer a quieter, smoother rider experience and a more sustainable transportation solution.” said Valley Regional Transit Executive Director Kelli Badesheim, “It’s just one more way Valley Regional Transit is moving the Treasure Valley forward.”
Funding for the buses and charging facilities came from the Federal Transit Administration, Idaho Power, and local support from Boise and Meridian. The buses unveiled today represent four of what will eventually be a dozen electrically-powered buses.
“We’re delighted that Valley Regional Transit participated in our electric vehicle charging station incentive and can’t wait to see these emission-free buses on the road. We’re proud to support electric vehicles and work with companies like Valley Regional Transit to advance this technology,” said Jeff Rigby, Idaho Power Key Account Energy Advisor.
Boise Mayor Lauren McLean looks forward to an electric-powered future. “As we imagine what a carbon-neutral city looks like in 2050, we know it will have to include clean public transit options that can connect more people to more places, more often. As we continue enhancing service coming out of the pandemic, these electric buses will be an incredible asset to the VRT fleet.”
The new buses are purpose-built to be electric-powered, with carbon-fiber-reinforced composite bodies and powerful electric motors that provide a smooth ride, greater horsepower, and more extended range. The buses boast a top speed of 65 miles per hour and can travel between 163 and 232 miles on a charge. Recharging the batteries takes about three hours.
Currently, eighty-five percent of VRT’s vehicle fleet runs on low-emission compressed natural gas (CNG). As the older buses are retired, new no-emission vehicles will replace them. The buses unveiled today are 40-foot models that will go into service in October. Eight 35-foot buses will arrive later this year and early next year. The electric buses will service routes in Ada County.