Coventry and Oxford are developing business cases as part of an England-wide competition to switch an entire town or city’s bus fleet to electric vehicles.
Subject to the success of the cases, each area will receive £50m worth of investment from the Department for Transport, with an aim to transition the entire bus fleet to electric by 2025.
As well as funding for new vehicles, the grant will also cover the investment in wider infrastructure such as charging points and upgrades to the electric grid.
The £50m will be supported by a further £75m worth of investment from local bus operators into the new electric buses.
The project aims to improve air quality, lower greenhouse gas emissions and reduce the overall running costs of the buses.
The Government, Transport for West Midlands and local partners will now work to finalise the project details and business case.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: ‘As we build back greener from Covid-19, we can provide people with more environmentally-friendly transport and cleaner air.
‘Coventry and Oxford could soon be at the forefront of our plans for a new era of bus services, helping us develop the green transport network of the future and support jobs right here in the UK.’
Andy Street, the Mayor of the West Midlands, added: ‘This news is brilliant for Coventry and the West Midlands, and I am delighted the Secretary of State and his department have once again put their faith in our region to deliver.
‘Turning all of Coventry’s bus fleet electric is not only a major boost to public transport in the city, but it will also help tackle the climate emergency we face both here in the West Midlands and the wider UK.’
Photo Credit – Coventry City Council