First public transit electric bus unveiled in Gulfport
Coast Transit Authority and Mississippi Power unveiled the first battery electric bus in Mississippi.
This bus, manufactured by Gillig, is zero-emission and 35-feet long. The green and clean electric bus builds on a progression of CTA’s environmentally friendly fleet since 2003. CTA currently operates with a fleet of hybrid electric and dual-fueled (gas and propane) buses on fixed and demand response services.
The crowd was serenaded with tunes from students from Anniston Elementary. CTA Executive Director Kevin Coggin said, “We have been waiting for a long time, watching battery electric, waiting for the technology to get to the point where we can run the bus all day without offsite charging. So, we don’t have an internal combustion engine on this vehicle, the operating cost for fuel is less. So, even though you pay a little bit more for this bus compared to a diesel, over the life cycle of the bus, 12, 15 years, it is cheaper to operate than a diesel bus.”
Mississippi Power President and CEO Anthony Wilson said, “Most people know there is just a growing trend, I think, really, across the United States, across the world, to move to transportation that’s more electric, that’s more environmentally friendly and really this bus is just an example of a growing trend that where we are moving people, we are moving things.”
Funding was made possible by grants from the U.S. Department of Transportation, Mississippi Power, and Coast Transit Authority.