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New electric buses will hit Lincoln streets this spring
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New electric buses will hit Lincoln streets this spring

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Buses

Lincoln is replacing 10 diesel-powered buses with electric buses.

File this under symbolic timing you can't script. 

As Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird and other city leaders took an initial ride on one of Lincoln's new electric buses last week, the bus turned west onto Salt Creek Roadway as an eastbound coal train barreled down the tracks. 

The moment wasn't lost on passengers, who talked about it in the quiet StarTran bus.

This year, 10 electric buses purchased from New Flyer will replace diesel-powered buses, and aside from running cleaner, the new buses will improve the bus system's reliability because the fleet will have fewer breakdowns, according to the city. 

The electric buses regenerate electricity as they brake and will be able to run for a full, eight-hour shift, according to StarTran Transit Manager Mike Davis.

Fully charging the bus will take about three hours, he said.

For riders, "the feel will be maybe the same; they'll notice the quietness I think the most," Davis said. 

Three buses arrived last week, and a fourth was set to arrive this week, and likely will hit the streets this spring. 

Overall, $1.45 million in federal grants have allowed the city to purchase the four electric buses and two electric charging stations for $3.8 million, according to city records.

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Reach the writer at 402-473-2657 or rjohnson@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LJSRileyJohnson.

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