Image of the YRT Electric Bus

YRT electric bus trial is here!

YRT’s first electric bus will go into service on Monday, June 29. As part of the trial, two electric buses will operate on either Route 55 – Davis or 44 – Bristol in the Town of Newmarket.

York Region is focused on mitigating climate change and taking steps to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. In pursuit of York Region’s goal of zero GHG emissions by 2051, YRT is moving towards electrification of the bus fleet. In 2019, York Regional Council approved the purchase of six, 40-foot, battery electric buses from two Canadian manufactures: New Flyer and Nova Bus. We will be launching two of these buses on June 29, with more electric buses to come later.

Some of the benefits of electric buses include:

  • Reduced fuel and maintenance costs
  • Reduced noise
  • Reduced emissions

The electric bus trial will also allow us the opportunity to gain more knowledge and experience on electric bus technology, which will inform research and decisions on the purchase of additional electric buses.

Thank you to our partners:

This electric bus trial was made possible by working with our partner agencies, including: the Canadian Urban Transit Research and Innovation Consortium, Newmarket-Tay Power Distribution Ltd., bus manufacturers New Flyer Industries and Nova Bus, and Siemens for providing support for electrical charging equipment. The federal government also funded a portion of the overhead charging station at Newmarket Terminal.

How it will work:

An overhead charging station is located at Newmarket Terminal. The bus will charge underneath the overhead station before picking up passengers at the platform. Note that not all Route 55 and 44 trips will be serviced by the electric bus.

 


Frequently Asked Questions

Why are we testing the electric bus on Routes 44 and 55?

These routes were determined to be suitable for testing the electric bus based on the distance they travel, number of passengers they typically carry and other technical requirements.

How often will the bus need to recharge?

This depends on various factors such as bus type, passenger loads, temperature/weather conditions and traffic patterns. Some buses may require a charge after every trip, while others may last longer. This is something we will be monitoring and analyzing through this trial.

The routes have been modeled using software that simulates different scenarios (e.g. weather, passenger loads, geography, etc.), and this trial will give us an even better understanding of the vehicles’ performance.

There are two locations where the bus will be able to charge: Newmarket Terminal and the Bus Storage and Maintenance Facility in Newmarket.

Does the distance the bus travels on a full charge vary during the winter and summer?

Yes, and this will be further tested and monitored through the trial.

Will the vehicles recharge with passengers on board?

No. The bus will charge underneath the overhead station at Newmarket Terminal before picking up passengers at the platform.

What does it sound like? How will I know I’m on an electric bus?

An electric bus is substantially quieter than a typical diesel bus. Travellers will no longer hear the noises associated with engines and transmissions.

The bus can also be identified by the green and blue full wrap design.

When will the remaining four electric buses be launched?
The remaining buses are currently being tested. They will be put into service throughout July.
What are York Region's plans for further introducing more electric buses on all/major YRT routes?

We are working towards purchasing more electric buses in the future, but this will take time, further testing and research, and budget approvals. The electric bus trial will allow us the opportunity to gain more knowledge and experience on electric bus technology, which will inform research and decisions on the purchase of additional electric buses.

This trial is the first step in electrification of the YRT fleet and a key contribution to York Region’s goal of zero GHG emissions by 2051.

We will keep our travellers informed as we know and learn more.