Further to the stories we published on 5/2/2021 and 3/3/2021 it is now confirmed that Coventry will receive £50m to fund 297 all-electric buses after the West Midlands Combined Authority Board gave their final approval at a meeting on Friday after seeing the final business case.
This means Coventry will be the first city in the country to host all electric buses. The target date is by 2025. The work will start next month.
The city bid highlighted how the scheme could help solve poor air quality.
The funding from the Department for Transport aims to support improvements to air quality, lower greenhouse gases, and reduce the costs of running buses. The electric buses will also provide a more comfortable passenger experience which will help to boost the number of people using buses to travel around the city. Highways officers believe it will save around 55 tonnes of Nitrogen Dioxide every year.
The bid was secured by Coventry City Council, Warwickshire County Council and Transport for West Midlands (TfWM), which is part of the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA).
As well as funding for new vehicles, the grant will also cover investment in wider infrastructure such as charging points and upgrades to the electric grid.
The £50m will be supported by a further £78m of investment from local bus operators into the new electric buses, depot charging facilities and associated power upgrades.
The all-electric bus city programme will also give a commitment to ensure all future buses operating in the city after winter 2025 must be all electric.
Coventry has one of the largest networks of electric vehicle charge points in any city outside London, and the investment in buses will complement other schemes that feature and promote electric vehicle use in Coventry such as the electrification of the Council’s own fleet of vehicles and the promotion of electric taxis.