The Emergence of a Green Revolution
The Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) has embarked on a major ecological transformation. This revolution began in 2017 with the purchase of 60 vehicles for a pilot project, marking the first step towards a completely carbon-neutral bus fleet. Bem Case, the Executive Director of Innovation and Sustainable Development, highlights that despite initial hesitations due to past experiences, this move is part of a commitment to technological renewal.

Early Steps and Innovations
In 2019, TTC’s first electric bus hit the roads, a significant milestone in embracing this emerging technology. Beyond battery performance, various elements such as door systems, steering, and seat arrangements were meticulously tested. Feedback from drivers and passengers played a crucial role in both technical and subjective evaluations of the vehicles.

Challenges and Major Advancements
However, the journey was not without challenges. Similar to Edmonton, the TTC faced issues with Proterra, an American supplier, particularly in terms of battery life and spare parts availability. Nevertheless, with federal and municipal financial support totaling $700 million, a contract for 340 new electric buses was signed last April, with delivery expected in 2025. New Flyer and Nova Bus, two Canadian companies, share this contract.

Financially Supported Transition
This transition is greatly facilitated by subsidies and assistance programs, reducing the initial investment costs. Meena Bibra from Clean Energy Canada highlights the long-term financial benefits, pointing out significant savings over the lifespan of electric vehicles. Concurrently, hybrid buses are also being delivered, forming another pillar of the TTC’s ecological transition.

Reflections on the Ecological and Economic Impact
However, Catherine Morency, a mobility expert at Polytechnique Montréal, questions the ecological efficiency of this strategy in a tight financial context, suggesting an increase in service level as a more prudent alternative. Despite this, the TTC’s commitment to a zero-emission transition sends a strong message for Canada’s largest city, symbolizing a significant step towards a more sustainable future.


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