By Steve Tawa
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — SEPTA is taking another greener turn. It’s one of a handful of transit agencies across the country taking in federal grant money to put electric buses on Philadelphia streets.
The more than $2.5 million Federal Transit Administration grant will help SEPTA purchase 25 “zero emission” electric buses.
“The buses will be used on two routes in South Philadelphia – bus routes 29 and 79.”
SEPTA deputy general manager Rich Burnfield says, “Both of the routes are fairly short, level, and a good fit for a pilot for electric buses.”
Burnfield says the new 40-foot buses will get their juice at two planned charging stations.
“Essentially what the bus will do is come underneath a canopy type structure and receive a fast charge. It takes about ten minutes.”
The grant funds the price differential between a standard $700,00 diesel/electric hybrid bus and an $800,000 electric bus.
Burnfield says SEPTA has one of the greenest bus fleets in the country, since 50 percent are already those hybrids.