Transport for London (TfL) announced that two further bus routes, the 507 and 521 (which link Waterloo station to Victoria and London Bridge stations respectively), will operate entirely with electric buses from autumn next year. The 5-year contract to operate the routes has been awarded to Go Ahead following a competitive tender process, and will mean that 51 electric buses will operate across the two routes that will become the second and third pure electric bus routes in the Capital.
By 2020 all 300 single deck buses operating in central London will be zero emission (either electric or hydrogen) and all 3,000 double deck buses will be hybrid. “The Ultra Low Emission Zone that will be introduced in 2020 is the most ambitious measure of its kind taken to tackle air pollution anywhere in the world, and it will transform our bus fleet into a cleaner, greener and more pleasant way of travelling for Londoners,” said Deputy Mayor of London for Environment and Energy, Matthew Pencharz.
Mike Weston, TfL’s Director of Buses, also commented: “TfL has always been at the forefront of deploying new, green technology in order to reduce harmful emissions from its bus fleet. I am delighted to announce that two further routes are to convert to fully electric operation – giving our passengers a quieter, smoother journey and also delivering significant environmental benefits. Electric buses represent another important step in our ongoing efforts to reduce emissions, significantly improving air quality in the Capital.”
This announcement follows the introduction of the first of two new electric buses, manufactured by Spanish company Irizar, into passenger service earlier this week. The two single-deck buses will operate on routes 507 and 521 and will join two existing electric buses on the Go Ahead-operated commuter routes in central London. A further six electric single deck buses are already in the TfL fleet. Four of them operate on route H98 in west London and two serve route 312 in south London – that later this year will become the Capital’s first all-electric bus route.