First all-electric bus route for London

First all-electric bus route for London TfL’s route 312 to become the capital’s first all-electric route with seven more electric buses due to join existing pair of Optare MetroCitys.

Arriva has been awarded the contract to run London’s first all-electric bus route. Two existing Optare MetroCitys on route 312 will be joined by a further seven electric buses in a new contract which starts in September 2015, although there is no date yet for full-electric operation.

Arriva is the current contractor for route 312 which runs from Croydon bus garage and Norwood Junction via Addiscombe and East Croydon, and won the new contract in a competitive tender. It is now discussing electric bus options with manufacturers.

“This is an exciting new milestone for our bus fleet, which is already one of the cleanest in Europe,” says Mike Weston, TfL’s director of buses. “We currently have eight electric buses in our fleet and as this number grows we are learning more about this new technology, which alongside other measures like retrofitting older vehicles with enhanced exhaust systems and continuing the expansion of our hybrid fleet, continues to contribute towards our strategy to further reduce harmful emissions from the capital’s bus fleet.”

TfL currently has four Optare electric buses, in addition to the two on route 312 which entered service in December 2014. The four entered service on route H98 Hayes End-Hounslow in July 2014 and there are also two BYD electric buses on route 507 Waterloo-Victoria and 521 Waterloo-London Bridge which entered service in December 2013.