Go-Ahead joins partners to launch all-electric bus fleet for Oxford
- Fleet of 159 zero emission battery electric buses launched in Oxford
- Work complete in creating one of the UK’s largest bus charging hubs at Go-Ahead’s Cowley depot
- Buses will deliver cleaner air, smoother journeys and brand new vehicles for bus users
The Go-Ahead Group has joined partners in Oxford to launch one of the UK’s biggest fleets of electric buses, delivering cleaner air, smoother journeys and brand new vehicles for the university city.
The £82.5 million project will deliver 159 battery buses onto the streets of Oxford – the first of which have already gone into service.
It has been funded via a collaboration between Oxfordshire County Council, Go-Ahead’s Oxford Bus Company and Stagecoach. The Council was awarded £32.8M from the Government’s Zero Emission Bus Regional Areas (ZEBRA) scheme and contributed £6M directly, while bus operators invested £43.7M.
The groundbreaking infrastructure project is a huge boost to Oxford’s vision to creating a more sustainable, decarbonized public transport system and improving air quality.
Oxford Bus Company will deliver 104 electric buses into service and Stagecoach 55. In preparation for launch, Oxford Bus Company has electrified its Cowley House depot, turning it into one of the biggest electric bus charging stations in Britain – with each charging point providing enough electricity for buses to drive up to 200 miles per day.
To celebrate the historic development key stakeholders gathered for a launch event at Divinity School in Oxford city centre on Monday night where some of the new electric buses were showcased and key representatives delivered speeches.
Go-Ahead is the UK’s leading operator of zero emission buses with more than 700 electric and hydrogen fuel cell buses on the road, and with plans for more than 1,000 by the end of 2025.
Matt Carney, CEO of The Go-Ahead Group’s bus division, said:
“Go-Ahead is proud to be the largest operator of zero emission buses in Britain. Electric buses make an enormous difference to air quality in cities and by decarbonising our fleet in towns and cities across the country, we aim to make a positive contribution to the fight against climate change.
“These new buses in Oxford will form Go-Ahead’s biggest fleet of zero emission buses outside London. The project is an example of bus operators working closely with local authorities to deliver for communities.”
Luke Marion, Oxford Bus Company Managing Director, said:
“This is a historic moment in our journey towards transforming our city services to electric. Our first tranche of electric buses is now in service, and are already starting to improve air quality and make bus travel an even more attractive option for people to travel around Oxford.
“Decarbonising buses is an exciting project – and we have demonstrated that with the right strategic partnership working between the public and private sector, we can unlock investment to make it happen. We look forward to working with Oxfordshire County Council on important initiatives going forward to encourage people to travel by bus.”