Penn Transit is pleased to announce the inclusion of the first full-size electric vehicles to its fleet!
Four new shuttles will primarily accommodate the following transit routes: On-Request Evening Shuttles, Penn Accessible Transit, A.M. Medical Service Shuttle, FMC Shuttle, and Pennovation Works Shuttle.
As fully electric passenger vans are not yet widely available for purchase, electric-powered cargo vans were retrofitted for passenger service. Not only was this solution cost-effective, it meant that Penn Transit has been able to begin supporting the University’s carbon neutral commitment sooner than anticipated.
Why electric? Fleet electrification decreases carbon emissions reducing Penn’s carbon footprint. Each vehicle saves 13.2 metric tons of CO2 per year, or 53.04 metric tons for Penn’s four vehicles. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, the environmental benefit of this transition equates to growing 893 tree saplings for 10 years.
“We are very excited about the addition of electric vehicles being the latest sustainable transportation initiative from Penn Transit,” said Division of Business Services Vice President Marie Witt. “It comes at a time when Penn Transit reached record ridership transporting over 340,000 passengers in FY2022.”
Michael Bernhardt, Ph.D., Director of Penn Transit Services, explained that Penn Transit anticipates adding even more electric vehicles in the future. “These four vehicles are just the beginning. We are actively pursuing sources of state and federal government grant funding to support expanding our fleet.”
The electric vehicles debuted Oct. 10 as part of Penn Climate Week.