County signs off on purchase of two new CNG buses

The local transit fleet is a step closer to adding two new people-movers that run on compressed natural gas, after Mesa County commissioners signed off on a purchase order today for the two new vehicles.

Grand Valley Transit already counts two 40-foot buses running on CNG, which were added to the fleet in November of last year. The two new buses set for purchase are a bit smaller, at 32 feet in length, said Mesa County Regional Transportation Planning Office manager Todd Hollenbeck.

Hollenbeck said that the difference in price between a new CNG bus and a traditional diesel vehicle is about $50,000.

And, in referring to the two CNG buses already in service, he said, “In the first nine months, the difference between compressed natural gas and diesel, we’re seeing about $500 month in savings.”

He said that number is probably closer to $800 to $1,000 a month in savings, as GVT has used the CNG buses in more of an expanded role lately.

Based on those cost savings, transit officials expect to recoup the additional cost of the new CNG buses within about eight years. The average lifespan of the CNG buses are about 12 years, Hollenbeck said.

Read the full story in the Tuesday edition of the Daily Sentinel.



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