This Thursday, May 27 from 2:00-4:00pm, the START Bus board and staff will host an Open House at 55 Karns Meadow Road. Last winter START deployed 8 battery-electric buses, which have been carrying passengers for the past six months. Due to the pandemic, there was not a true unveiling for these buses or the electric charging stations now located at the START Barn. Join the START board, local electeds, and a representative from the Proterra bus company to learn more about the first Ebuses in Wyoming and the first Proterra ZX5 buses deployed in the United States.
The idea to host an Open House actually came from a local middle school student whose ‘Combat the Silence’ project focused on buses last semester. This 7th grade language arts project has students select a topic to research, carry out interviews with a community member or expert, and identify an agency that is working on solving the problem in the community. Partnering with the Teton County School District, the Town and START are hopeful that this student and some of his classmates might be able to attend Thursday’s Open House.
In terms of START Bus’ broader goals, these new Ebuses are a significant first step as START Director Darren Brugmann shares, “These eight buses provide cost effective, clean, efficient transportation, and are helping START reduce emissions to improve air quality. START is committed to transitioning 40% of its fleet to electric by 2022.” Electric buses offer a quieter ride for reduced noise pollution, greater efficiency, and lower operating costs than combustion engine vehicles.
The Proterra Ebuses cruising swiftly down our streets can deliver up to 329 miles of drive range, the most energy storage and longest drive range of any 40-foot electric bus available. Each bus has two electric motors that deliver an impressive 550 horsepower, accelerating a ZX5 bus from 0 to 20 mph in under six seconds. Proterra electric buses feature zero tailpipe emissions, saving approximately 230,000 pounds of greenhouse gases annually when replacing diesel buses.