AS Tallinna Linnatransport (TLT) announced the winning tender for the purchase of 100 + 50 additional environmentally friendly buses running on compressed gas. This is also the last stage in the renewal of the capital’s bus fleet when a total of 350 buses running on compressed gas will be brought onto the route. Solaris Bus & Coach won the tender.
Deputy Mayor of Tallinn Andrei Novikov said that the successful acquisition of TLT is an important step towards a greener capital.
“The common goal of the city and the public transport service provider, TLT, is to reduce emissions from public transport in the capital. If 350 compressed gas buses run on Tallinn routes instead of the current diesel buses, the average age of rolling stock has decreased from 9.5 years to 5 years, and thus the footprint of public transport to the environment will also decrease,” said Novikov.
He illustrated that when all these buses reach their routes, CO2 emissions to the city will be reduced by about 25,000 tons per year, which is estimated to be comparable to the annual emissions of 7,000 cars with internal combustion engines. Novikov expressed the hope that the renewed vehicle fleet would give more people in the capital a reason to prefer public transport to make their daily trips.
“By 2025, we hope to reach a situation where no more diesel buses would run on the streets of Tallinn. In the long run, the city wants to keep up with technological developments and be ready for the introduction of electric buses. Our goal is to make Tallinn’s public transport emission-free and renewable energy-based by 2035,” Novikov expressed hope.
Otto Popel, a member of the board of TLT, said that two bids had been received for the bus procurement, and the winner was Solaris Bus & Coach, whose tender met the requirements and criteria. He added that the total value of the contract was EUR 26 925 000, which would result in the delivery of 100 Solaris Urbino CNG city buses in 2022, with the option to purchase another 50 similar vehicles if necessary.
“Initially, Solaris Bus & Coach will supply 25 articulated buses and 75 buses with a normal body in the capital. The service life of buses purchased within the framework of the public procurement is up to ten years, and it is assumed that each bus travels an average of almost 80,000 km a year,” said Popel. He added that the first compressed gas buses that arrived on the route last year had received a lot of positive feedback from both TLT employees and passengers. “The buses performed well, the drivers adapted quickly and are extremely satisfied with both the driving comfort and the driving characteristics. As we are replacing older diesel buses with gas buses, which required high repair costs, the company’s costs for maintenance and repairs will also decrease significantly, “said Popel, adding that the well-being of passengers is paramount for TLT as a public transport service provider, so safety, quality, comfort, and environmental friendliness are keywords to which special attention is paid.
Popel stated that if in the summer of 2021 there are already 100 compressed gas buses that arrived on the route last year in the capital, and in the coming months, the Tallinn bus fleet will be renewed in the form of another 100 compressed gas buses, then the new Solaris vehicles purchased within the framework of this procurement will arrive in Tallinn in 2022 when Tallinn’s public transport buses celebrate their 100th anniversary.
Petros Spinaris, a Member of the Management Board of Solaris Bus & Coach, added that the company is grateful for the victory and trust in delivering an additional 100 + 50 environmentally friendly buses to Tallinn.
“In the last two years, 200 compressed gas buses have already arrived in Tallinn. We are very familiar with this technology, having used it since 2004. More than 1,500 Solaris Bus & Coach vehicles with the same technology serve more than a dozen European cities,” said Spinaris. He emphasized that the vehicles ordered under the new TLT procurement were not only a major investment in modern and safe transport but also a contribution to a cleaner and better quality of life and environment.