Phoenix approves $230M to buy green buses

By Christina Estes
Published: Thursday, January 26, 2023 - 8:20am

Phoenix Arizona bus stop
Christina Estes/KJZZ
Phoenix has a fleet of 500 heavy-duty buses.

Phoenix leaders approved contracts Wednesday worth $230 million to start converting the city’s fleet of buses to low and zero emissions.

Over the next five years, Phoenix will test a sub-fleet of zero and near-zero emission buses to see how they work in our heat. Zero emission buses require no gas and release no tailpipe pollution. 

Vice Mayor Yassamin Ansari said cleaner buses will bring financial benefits, “This will make us more eligible for federal grant opportunities that we have already been taking advantage of to everyday medical cost savings for our future residents who will hopefully have less of a struggle with asthma growing up than our current residents do.”

The five-year contracts include battery electric modes from GILLIG LLC and fuel cell electric and hybrid electric buses from New Flyer of America, Inc. The money will come from the Public Transit Department’s five-year Capital Improvement Program, which includes federal and regional funds.

“With 500 heavy-duty buses, we have the largest fleet in Arizona and so when we make steps in this area it makes a big difference,” said Mayor Kate Gallego. 

Phoenix hopes to convert a third of its fleet to zero emission by 2027 with all buses converted by 2040.

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