Electric buses come to Stockton

Stockton is the home, of the first Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) route in the nation to be completely powered by electricity as of Aug. 23. 

San Joaquin Regional Transit District’s Route 44 (RTD) is a BRT Express Route traveling from the Downtown Transit Center to Arch-Airport Road. 

A second electric route will be added in January along Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard bringing the total count of electric buses to 12. Stockton RTD has a fleet of 120 buses with six retiring this year. 

Electric buses are quieter and have zero emissions. Each bus takes ten to fifteen minutes to charge and can travel up to 40 miles per charge. An Electric Bus has a fuel efficiency equivalent to 18.22 miles per gallon. 

A new electric bus costs $850,000 compared to $600,000 for an electric-diesel hybrid, but will have cheaper and simpler maintenance.

 Transit Ambassador Lead Nelson Nieves feels confident this will set a precedent for environmentally conscious practices.

 “We’re going to set the example and other cities are [going to] follow through,” said Nieves. This sentiment was shared by Public Information Officer and Marketing Manager Terry Williams. “There are several cities adopting electric buses,” said Williams. Plans to reduce Stockton’s carbon footprint don’t end with these two routes. 

“RTD’s Board of Directors will be asked to pass an official resolution to declare its intent to convert to 100[percent] electric, zero emission buses for all routes serving the city of Stockton by 2025,” according to a news release from RTD.