START is charged up about new electric bus demo

JACKSON HOLE, WYO – START will test pilot a new electronic bus next week similar to those it has on order to add to the fleet.

Might as well see if it’s up to “Snowmaggedon II” is the thinking at START. Talk about baptism by fire.

START Bus today announced that US-based electric bus manufacturer, Proterra, will have an electric bus in Jackson from February 18 until February 23. This bus, which will be very similar to the buses currently being manufactured for START, will be placed into the fleet rotation for public use throughout the week.

There will also be a public introduction and demonstration taking place on Wednesday, February 20 at the START Bus facility located at 55 Karns Meadow Drive.

  • 12:00noon:  the public is invited to gather at the START Bus facility and learn more about this electric bus. The Director of Business Development at Proterra, Alan Westenskow, will be on hand to answer questions and provide information.
  • 12:30pm:  attendees will be invited to board the electric bus for a demonstration ride in town.

“The START Bus board is committed to reducing emissions from the transportation sector and improving air quality in Teton County,” said Darren Brugmann, START Bus Director. “A goal has been established to transition the START fleet to 40% electric by 2022.”

Throughout the week of February 18 the electric bus will be making public trips from Jackson to Teton Village as part of the regularly scheduled START Bus routes. The purpose of this visit is to get firsthand experience as to how an electric bus handles winter conditions in Teton County. This visit will also provide an opportunity for the Town fleet maintenance staff to service an electric bus as well as allow START Bus drivers the chance to operate this type of vehicle.

“The components of the electric bus that will be visiting us next week are very similar to the buses which we currently have on order with Proterra,” Brugmann added. “However, this is a demonstration bus as the buses for START are currently being manufactured. We anticipate that our buses will be delivered to Jackson in the first quarter of 2020, which would essentially be this time next year.”

In August, START Bus was awarded a federal grant of $2,290,000 through the US Department of Transportation’s Low- or No-Emissions Grant program to purchase up to eight electric buses to replace biodiesel buses currently in the transit fleet.

An electric bus program reducing energy consumption through transportation supports the Jackson/Teton County Comprehensive Plan addressing Common Value-Ecosystem Stewardship, sharing the vision to preserve and protect the area’s ecosystem.

Proterra is an all-American company with facilities located in Silicon Valley, Los Angeles, and Greenville, SC.  Proterra has supplied electric buses to communities throughout the United States including Park City, Shreveport, Missoula, Chicago, Nashville, Worchester and Seattle to name a few.

All members of the public are invited to attend this electric bus introduction and demonstration.  For more information on this program please contact START Bus directly at (307) 733-4521.

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