Capital Metro, a public transportation company, wants to use clean energy to run its clean buses.
Driving the news: Agency officials this week revealed that CapMetro will invest $34 million in the construction of solar panel canopies that will generate renewable energy to power its expanding electric bus fleet.
Rewind: As part of a pledge to reduce emissions, the CapMetro board authorized the $255 million purchase of 197 electric buses in 2021.
According to agency officials, this new charging project will be able to charge more than 200 electric vehicles, but it won’t be able to power the entire future electric fleet of CapMetro.
Details: Austin-based Holt Renewables will design and construct the photovoltaic system, which will span 12 acres with over 7,000 panels.
The new project will be located at CapMetro’s North Operations bus yard, at 9315 McNeil Road, near the intersection of Burnet Road and U.S. 183.
Construction is scheduled to begin in October.
The big picture: As heavy polluters, notorious for their exhaust, buses are getting a makeover.
Last fall, the Austin ISD board committed to moving to an all-electric bus fleet by 2035.
Fuel-wise, the electric variety can be as much as a third cheaper to operate than their diesel counterparts.
The bottom line: “We’ll be able to get more of our zero-emissions buses out on the road to provide a quieter and more comfortable ride for our customers,” Dottie Watkins, president and CEO of CapMetro, said in a statement.