King County Metro to buy 73 battery-powered buses

SEATTLE (AP) — King County Executive Dow Constantine has announced plans to purchase dozens of battery-powered buses after a successful test of the electric vehicles last year.

The Seattle Times reports (http://bit.ly/2jBqGcR ) that Constantine said Tuesday that King County Metro is planning to buy 73 of the buses from California-based company Proterra. Metro will pay $55 million for the 40-foot vehicles and $6 million for charging stations. Most of the costs will be federally funded.

Constantine also challenged the electric vehicle industry to build a 60-foot-long battery-powered bus to accommodate the more than 400,000 daily passengers of King County Metro, the nation’s seventh-busiest public bus agency.

Proterra CEO Ryan Popple says the company is capable of making the larger battery-powered buses, although it doesn’t have any clients that have asked for such models.

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Information from: The Seattle Times, http://www.seattletimes.com