Fleet will be largest of any public school district in the Midwest
The first bus of a large fleet of electric school buses rolled onto the lot of Troy Middle School in October. When complete, Troy’s fleet of 64 electric buses will be the largest in the Midwest, according to Levo Mobility LLC, the company partnering with Troy Community School District 30-C to complete the district’s infrastructure transformation for the project.
The transition of Troy’s current fleet of diesel and gasoline buses to electric, zero-emissions vehicles is planned to reach completion over the next several years.
The buses will be built in the new Lion Electric vehicle manufacturing plant in Joliet, IL.
“Troy School District is excited to be at the forefront of the electrification of its bus fleet,” said Superintendent Dr. Paul Schrik, “and is thrilled to be working in conjunction with local business partners to help get us there. We are also excited to provide additional educational opportunities for our students as we move forward with the electrification of the fleet.”
“The electrification of our transportation fleet is the next logical step for our district,” said Mark Griglione, Troy 30-C school board president. “We are proactive in bringing the future to our community today. Three years ago, we placed solar panels on the roofs of all our buildings, providing power to our local grid. Last year, we placed hospital-grade systems in all our buildings to provide a safe environment for our staff and students during this COVID period. And now, we have decided to move toward electrification of our transportation fleet to bring this sustainable energy solution to our community.”
The Troy school board, superintendent and other district administrators and staff, as well as representatives from Levo Mobility and Lion Electric, gathered for the delivery of the first bus. Several took short excursions to experience the smooth and quiet ride.
The affordability, safety, better indoor air quality and lower greenhouse emissions all played roles in the district’s decision to purchase the fleet.
Troy Transportation Director Mark Baumann said the buses also come equipped with regenerative braking, where the motor generates electricity back into the batteries when the accelerator is released.
Many of the buses purchased will be 71-passenger, Type C vehicles, with several smaller 29-person, Type A buses with wheelchair lifts, according to Troy Facilities and Operations Director Ben Hettel. The vehicle-to-grid technology (V2G), Hettel added, also allows the vehicles to deposit electricity back into the grid and to recharge at non-peak electricity times to save dollars.
“At Levo and with our V2G partner Nuvve, we are thrilled to be supporting districts like Troy 30-C, every step of the way to transition to electric school buses,” said Maggie Clancy, Chief Commercial Officer of Levo Mobility. “We remain dedicated to doing the most good through fleet electrification – enabling a sustainable future and a cleaner transportation experience for students, drivers and community members across the country.”