A FLEET of 124 hydrogen buses are gearing up ready to take to the West Midlands’ streets.
The news comes after a £30million grant was handed to Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) from the Department for Transport after a successful bid to the Zero-emission Bus Regional Areas (ZEBRA) fund to eco-friendly vehicles.
The money will cover the cost of a refuelling facility as well as the new vehicles.
Around 24 will be articulated tram-style buses which will run on the new Sprint bus priority route along the A34 and A45 between Walsall, Birmingham and Solihull.
TfWM is set to work with bus company partners and the wider hydrogen production industry to get the fleet up and running over the next three years.
Added to the 20 double decker buses already on the streets in Birmingham TfWM say the region will have the largest hydrogen bus fleet in the Western world with 144 in total.
Hydrogen fuelled buses emit only water vapour which will will improve air quality and contribute to a reduction in the bus network’s carbon footprint.
Last year £50million of government funding was handed to create the UK’s first All Electric Bus City in Coventry by 2025 – a project which will see up to 300 fully electric buses operate across the city.
Pete Bond, director of integrated transport services with TfWM said: “Buses are the most used form of public transport in the region and this is welcome government investment in our network.
“These hydrogen buses, the All Electric Bus City scheme in Coventry and the roll out of electric vehicle charging facilities we are planning shows how the West Midlands is leading the way on decarbonising our transport and making good progress on achieving our net-zero targets.”