Assembly panel to receive update on electric buses

Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - An update on the use of electric buses by Capital Transit highlights the agenda of the Assembly Public Works and Facilities Committee over the noon hour Monday.

City Manager Rorie Watt said on Action Line Friday said there are people in the community that have been advocating that they should more aggressively purchase electric buses for Capital Transit.  He said they've got one coming and would like to see how that fairs before purchasing more.  "Honestly, having one electric bus in the next couple years for a town of Juneau's size puts us on the fore front of that technology."  He add that the manufacturing and use of  electric cars is really getting dialed in pretty good.  And we've seen a lot of electric cars in town.  The manufacturing on the buses is slower."

Electrical vehicle charger infrastructure and management is also on the agenda.  Watt said that with the growth in the number of electric cars people are calling for more charging stations.  There are now several hundred electric cars on Juneau roads, he said.  "We're trying to figure out how many charging stations to install, where should they go, should the owners of the electric cars have to get a permit to use them, how that all works."  He added the operation of the electric cars is cheap, but the infrastructure is expensive.

The settlement with Vokswagon and Juneau's share will be discussed.  Watt said those funds are going to be available and the committee will be updated on how and when the city can apply for some of those funds.  He said the funds could be used for electric buses and electric vehicle charges.  "It fits in nicely," he said.

The draft six year capital improvement plan will be presented to the committee, according to Watt.  "It's all the normal stuff. So we have a lot of roads to fix, and leaky roofs, and old buildings.  The city has quite an array of facilities."

The committee will meet in Assembly Chambers at City Hall.  

 

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