The Gazette

It’s back to drawing board for electric bus plan
The Gazette

The Société de transport de Montréal’s plan to electrify its bus fleet has stalled before it could even start. The STM may go back to the drawing board after the company that was supposed to manufacture the transit authority’s first no-diesel road vehicles declared bankruptcy and stopped operations.

The STM ordered seven fully electric mid-size buses from DesignLine USA — cost: $5.9 million — in May 2012. When it announced the contract, the STM hailed it as “one small step for the STM, one giant leap for electrification.”

The first vehicle was to hit Montreal streets in mid-2013, with the rest due by year-end. They were to be used on the 715 route, which connects downtown and Old Montreal. But so far, no buses have been delivered, STM spokesperson Amélie Régis told The Gazette.

Known as “midi-buses,” the DesignLine vehicles on order were nine metres long, compared with 12 metres for regular buses. The midi-buses carry 45 passengers, including 22 seated. Regular STM buses can carry 75 passengers, 30 of them seated.

The STM had planned to use the midibuses on the 715 route as a pilot project.

Et pendant ce temps, le PQ a fait de l’électrification des transports, la pierre angulaire de son plan d’action économique…