Page 22

Advancements in Clean Energy Transportation It is important to acknowledge the environmental and health hazards that come with the operation of petroleum-­ powered buses. Diesel, the fuel consumed by a vast majority of buses, is a known carcinogen that can negatively impact both the health of riders and outdoor air quality.12 When it comes to making the switch to electric shuttles, the benefits greatly outweigh the costs. In fact, battery-powered buses are said to be the more cost-effective option in the long run. On average, the cost of electricity is 80 percent less than the cost of diesel per mile traveled.13 Because shuttle buses are built to make fixed, short routes, they are the ideal candidate for electrification. The top reasons for a transition to electric vehicle (EV) shuttles in your lineup are hard-to-beat zero-emissions, quieter and smoother travel for customers and employees, and federal and state financial incentives that reduce total cost of ownership. Charging EV shuttles is a hassle-free experience, and can usually take place at single location, such as a parking lot. Charging typically can be done with both Level 2 AC or DC Fast Charging. A combination of both can be ideal most applications, offering more flexibility in schedules and duty cycles. On a full charge, an EV vehicle can typically run for 120-180 miles, a range perfectly suited for short, scheduled routes. From 12 person vans to larger 28 passenger buses, EV shuttles come in various types and models to fit your facility’s transportation needs. ADA-compliant features such as wheelchair lifts are also available as upfits. Eco-friendly practices are becoming increasingly important to consumers. According to a survey conducted by Swedish public transit authority, Västtrafik, a large proportion of passengers said that because the line is operated using environmentally friendly fuel, their willingness

to travel on the route was positively affected.14 Because shuttle buses have such high visibility to the customers they serve, most operators will proudly display their environmental stewardship with signage or a vehicle wrap, giving passengers peace of mind that the ride isn’t negatively impacting the environment or their health.

that is flexible and willing to work with your needs will be vital in determining the success of your reopening.◆ STAN BOCHNIAK is vice president, national parking sales for ABM Industries. He can be reached at stan.bochniak@abm. com. JIM NORRIS is director of business development, eMobility & electrical infrastructure, for ABM Industries. He can be reached

Selecting a Provider When it comes to selecting a shuttle transportation provider, look for a program that is customized to fit your facility’s needs. It is vital your provider understands and meets the increasing demands of keeping shuttles clean. Make sure to thoroughly research providers to make sure they both ensure a safe and timely shuttle service, and address the inevitable concerns of passengers. Due to COVID-related ride-sharing concerns, many commuters may opt to drive solo, while those with whom the solo drivers once carpooled may opt for shuttle use. Facility operators must be confident their selected provider can deliver consistent, quality service at scale until the threat of COVID-19 becomes less prevalent. While COVID-19 has been the major concern in recent months, the reality is that it is only one of many viral pathogens for which we must be watchful; the need for thorough cleaning and disinfection is here to stay. With this in mind, anticipating an ongoing expectation of cleanliness and disinfection will ensure that businesses are prepared to offer shuttle and other services well into the future, while keeping their customers, visitors and the public feel safe.

A Plan for Return Because nothing about the pandemic is certain, it is important that facilities managers take on a fluid approach to returning to the workplace. Be prepared to have a moving start date and be willing to pivot if necessary. Choosing a provider


SOURCES 1. Gensler. Published May 22, 2020. Accessed December 14, 2020. blog/most-people-want-toreturn-to-the-office-but-expect-changes 2. 3. Accessed December 18, 2020. https:// com/2020-05-01-IBM-Study-COVID-19-IsSignificantly-Altering-U-S-Consumer-Behavior-andPlans-Post-Crisis 4. Published October 7, 2020. Accessed December 14, 2020. covid-public-transit-decline/ 5. Published June 8, 2020. Accessed December 14, 2020. shared-transportation-in-post-covid-world 6. Accessed December 16, 2020. possible-futures-ways-people-react-after-covid 7. Published November 10, 2020. Accessed December 14, 2020. coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/ bus-transit-operator.html 8. List N Tool: COVID-19 Disinfectants | US EPA 9. Published August 5, 2020. Accessed December15,2020. 10. Accessed December 14, 2020. https:// 11. CDC. What rideshare, taxi, limo, and other passenger drivers-for-hire need to know about COVID-19. Cdc. gov. Published November 13, 2020. Accessed December 14, 2020. community/organizations/rideshare-drivers-for-hire. html 12. Environmental and Energy Study Institute. Fact Sheet: Battery Electric Buses: Benefits Outweigh Costs. Fact Sheet: Battery Electric Buses: Benefits Outweigh Costs | White Papers | EESI 13. Business Wire. Green Automotive’s e-Patriot Electric Shuttle Bus Benefits from Attractive Government Incentives. Green Automotive’s e-Patriot Electric Shuttle Bus Benefits from Attractive Government Incentives | Business Wire 14. Electric City Buses Increase Passenger Satisfaction. Electric city buses increase passenger satisfaction | Volvo Buses