Coventry to get new fully electric buses for greener, cleaner journeys
10 fully electric buses will be introduced to Coventry’s bus fleet after National Express and Coventry City Council won £2.2 million of Government funding to invest in greener, cleaner buses for the city.
The brand new ultra-low emission buses will operate on major arterial routes through the city that experience high levels of congestion and have been identified as air quality hotspots.
As part of the West Midlands Bus Alliance, National Express Coventry has committed to play its part in improving local air quality through reduced emissions.
The new electric buses will complement other measures being delivered through the Alliance partnership to tackle congestion and poor air quality in the city, such as junction improvements and upgrades to traffic control systems which will all help achieve significant air quality improvements.
Matt King, Operations Manager, National Express Coventry, said:
“As part of our Bus Alliance with Transport for West Midlands and Coventry City Council, we work very closely together on our commitment to improve air quality and reduce harmful emissions in the communities we serve.
“We’re delighted to have secured this funding to help us deliver 10 brand new electric buses for the city of Coventry. Customers will notice a smoother drive, as well as no engine noise. And of course they can ride easy knowing they are making no emissions at all.”
Cllr Jim O’Boyle, Cabinet Member, Jobs and Regeneration, Coventry City Council, said:
“In Coventry we are developing a local air quality plan that will embrace new technologies and identify improvements to air quality that will have a lasting impact on the city.
“A key part of this plan is to reduce vehicle emissions, and that’s why it’s such good news that we have secured this funding to help improve our bus fleet emission standards.”
The £2.2 million for Coventry’s fleet is part of a national £48 million investment announced by Transport Minister Nusrat Ghani at the UK Bus Summit last week. The funding aims to improve local air quality by cutting pollution and emissions which cause climate change.
Coventry City Council, National Express and Transport for West Midlands worked together on the joint bid for funding from the Ultra-Low Emission Bus Scheme. It also supports the City Council’s Local Air Quality Action Plan.
Ahead of Coventry’s year as the UK City of Culture in 2021, Coventry City Council and National Express will deploy 10 new fully electric buses along with 10 rapid chargers at the bus operator’s depot on Ford Street.
The rapid chargers will include solar panels to harvest renewable energy during the day and recharge the electric buses overnight, supporting further emissions savings for the bus fleet and the city.
National Express has already adopted a proactive approach to reducing emissions in Coventry.
Through the Bus Alliance partnership, Transport for West Midlands, Coventry City Council and National Express Coventry worked together to secure £1.5m from the Government’s 2017 Clean Bus Technology Fund to retrofit over 100 of the 153-strong fleet to Euro VI emission standard.
The bus operator also kicked off 2019 with £5 million worth of brand new buses for the city with some of the cleanest engines on the market.
17 top-spec Platinum double deckers are being rolled out in Coventry, featuring extra leg room, free wi-fi and USB chargers. They will be running on the university routes - the 11, 11U and 12X, which also go to the station and Earlsdon.
As well as being great news for customers, the new Platinum buses are also great news for the environment as the smart hybrid engines emit extremely low levels of the pollutant nitrogen oxide, so they are better for people’s lungs.
By 2020, at least 7% of National Express Coventry’s bus fleet will be zero emission. Harmful and carbon emissions on routes served by the new electric buses will be reduced by up to 37% annually and all National Express buses operating in Coventry will be at least Euro V standard.