NI invests £74m in zero-emission fleet for Translink

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Infrastructure Minister Nichola Mallon has unveiled the first of 80 electric double-deck buses, due to be in passenger service in spring 2022, as part of her £74 million investment in 100 zero-emission buses, which also includes 20 hydrogen-fuelled buses and a programme of associated infrastructure works to help decarbonise Northern ireland’s public transport.

Minister Mallon said: “The time for talking is over, it is now time for climate action. Cleaner, greener, sustainable transport is key to protecting our environment and fighting the climate crisis. I have been clear since coming to office that we must act now to deliver the change that our communities and our citizens deserve.

“That is why I provided £74 million of investment in zero/low-emission buses and I am delighted to see this investment now translate into delivery on the ground with the arrival of the first electric double-decker buses for public transport on the island of Ireland today. When all the buses arrive and are in service, Translink will have the 4th largest fleet across these islands of zero-emission buses – demonstrating my commitment to ensuring Northern Ireland is building a cleaner, greener society.

Chris Conway, Group Chief Executive at Translink added, “This is another significant milestone in our journey to reduce our carbon emissions and attract more people to cleaner public transport choices for the benefit of everyone. These new zero-emission buses will make up around one third of the Translink Metro fleet helping improve air quality in Belfast. They will also offer the latest standards in comfort, quality and accessibility with in-seat USB chargers, WiFi and new accessibility features.

“For first time in over three decades, city services in Belfast will see double doors being re-introduced on double-decker buses, facilitating faster boarding and alighting, new contactless ticketing and improving fresh air flow on board for passengers”.

Wrightbus MD, Neil Collins, concluded: “We’re delighted that Translink will be the first operator to put our Wrightbus Electroliner into passenger service. It seems incredibly fitting that passengers in Northern Ireland will be the first to benefit from the revolutionary bus that was developed and built in Northern Ireland.”