Trial to introduce Victoria’s first all-electric bus depot

Victoria’s first all-electric bus depot will charge 27 buses in Melbourne’s north by the start of 2024 as part of Andrews Labor Government’s zero-emission bus trial.

The largest participant in the $20 million trial, bus operator Ventura, will install 15 charging stations to power electric buses at its converted Ivanhoe depot, with its first 12 test electric buses set to enter the network This year.

In early 2024, the depot’s 27 electric buses will run on nine routes through the northern suburbs, transporting up to 10,000 people each week, including to La Trobe University and Northland Shopping Centre. They will travel more than 1.2 million kilometers over a year.

Major work to convert the depot to an all-electric depot will involve the construction of a new on-site substation and the installation of battery management technology and charging units, with work due to start in early July and end in November this year.

The initiative will provide valuable insight into the challenges and issues of transitioning an entire bus depot to battery electric bus technology, before more depots are built or converted in the years to come.

Six Victorian bus companies have been selected to trial two hydrogen and 50 electric buses on existing routes in Melbourne, Seymour and Traralgon, fostering vital partnerships between bus operators, manufacturers and energy companies ahead of the major transition from the state away from diesel buses.

Achieving zero emissions for buses is essential for Victoria to meet its legal commitment to net zero emissions by 2050, with the Labor government pledging that all new buses from 2025 will be zero emissions. A phased approach will allow the industry to prepare for the transition of around 4,000 buses to zero emissions.

Creating a greener fleet is part of Victoria Bus Map develop a more popular, modern and reliable network.

As Public Transport Minister Ben Carroll said

“We have a lot of work ahead of us as we transition our bus fleet to zero emissions, so having the opportunity to study and learn from the conversion of the Ventura depot to an all-electric bus depot will be invaluable for this process.”

“We are moving from dirty diesel to fume-free buses in an orderly and informed way that brings bus operators, manufacturers and energy providers on our side. »

As Minister of Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio said

“Transport is the second biggest contributor to Victoria’s emissions – we are investing in putting more zero-emission vehicles on the road for personal and public transport, helping to cut the cost of living while halving emissions by 2030.”

As Ivanhoe MP Anthony Carbines said

“Zero-emission vehicles are the way of the future, so it’s very exciting to see Ivanhoe as the location for this game-changing new depot.”

As Ventura General Manager Andrew Cornwall said

The transition from diesel buses to locally built electric buses at our Ivanhoe depot will be a breath of fresh air for customers traveling to destinations such as Latrobe University, Northland Shopping Centre, Preston Market and Railway Station of Gowrie.

“This trial will pave the way for us to have confidence in purchasing the right equipment to outfit our remaining 11 depots in time for the transition to all new zero-emission buses from 2025.”

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