First fully electric bus depot to power up Victoria

Image credit: Ventura Bus

Premier Daniel Andrews and Minister for Public Transport Ben Carroll visited the Ventura depot in Ivanhoe today, which will house the state’s largest fleet of locally manufactured zero-emission electric buses, marking a significant step forward in the Andrews Labor Government’s push for a cleaner, more sustainable bus fleet, the Victorian Government announced.

The Labor Government’s $20 million Zero Emissions Bus (ZEB) Trial is now converting the depot into the base for the growing fleet of electric buses.

The pilot will help guide the switch to zero emissions for the state’s public fleet of about 4,000 diesel buses, including nearly 2,200 in regional Victoria

Starting in 2025, all new buses on Victoria’s public transportation lines are expected to have zero emissions.

In particular, the trial’s electric bus bodies will be produced at Volgren’s Dandenong South plant in Victoria, creating local employment and boosting the local economy.

As part of the trial, Ventura is transitioning to a cleaner, greener fleet, with 12 new zero-emission buses entering service from the recently renovated Ivanhoe depot in March.

The nine northern suburbs routes that the new low-emission buses will run on include those to La Trobe University, Gowrie Station, and Northland Shopping Center.

A new transformer and 14 chargers have been installed as part of ongoing renovations at the Ivanhoe depot. 

Electrification specialist Zenob manages the enhanced grid connection that enables the 14 dual-gun Tritium rapid chargers.

The depot will house 27 battery-powered buses by the beginning of 2024, which will travel more than 1.2 million kilometres annually and carry up to 10,000 passengers through and around the northern suburbs.

According to Premier Daniel Andrews, Victorians deserve a good public transportation system that is dependable, sustainable, and clean. 

“That’s why we’re rolling out more electric buses, and work on the state’s first all-electric bus depot will soon be complete,” the premier noted.

Meanwhile, Minister for Public Transport Ben Carroll commented on how the government is eager to transition the state to a net zero economy. 

“We’re delivering all-electric buses and building our vital local industry partnerships with energy providers and manufacturers, as we transition to net zero,” the minister stated.