LNG Fueling Sites to Be Modified to Handle CNG Too
Arizona’s Phoenix Public Transit Department, which operates the nation’s largest fleet of liquefied natural gas buses with 305 units in service under the Valley Metro badge, is shifting over to compressed natural gas, with deliveries of 120 replacement buses from New Flyer Industries expected to begin in November.
“Compressed natural gas has become the public transit industry’s standard for natural gas powered vehicles,” department director Neal Young says in a release.
Also by November, the first of three existing LNG fueling sites will be modified with LCNG equipment to accommodate the CNG vehicles. Fuel will continued to be supplied as LNG via tanker truck, says transit service operations Jesus Sapien.
CNG for the 120 new buses “will save the city a net $4 million,” states the announcement.
“The 120 new CNG buses will replace the same number of retiring LNG buses and will be procured for $61 million via a regional cooperative purchasing agreement with the [Phoenix-area] Regional Public Transportation Authority,” the release says. Deliveries are to be complete by spring 2014.
No Major Refurbishment
Phoenix notes that its initial investment in LNG buses and fueling equipment came in the 1990s with a state-mandated conversion from gasoline and diesel to alternative fuels. “As part of its new long-term fuel strategy, the city will upgrade its LNG fueling sites to dispense CNG without having a total refurbishment of its bus facilities,” the announcement says.
Phoenix has 465 Valley Metro buses. Most are natural gas-fueled with about a third running on ultra-low sulfur diesel.
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Source: City of Phoenix with Fleets & Fuels follow-up