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Rochester, MN (KROC-AM News) - The City of Rochester held the event Friday to officially "cut the ribbon" on the city's two new electric transit vehicles and associated charging infrastructure.

The new battery-powered buses are scheduled to begin carrying passengers this week on Rochester Public Transit's busiest peak time route known as 560X. The new vehicles were built in St. Cloud in of the first electric vehicles in the RPT fleet and the first 60-foot articulated buses used in Rochester.

Rochester Public Transit
Rochester Public Transit

A news release says the buses feature third-generation battery storage with a maximum charge of 525 kWh. That should provide them with a range of about 150 miles on a single charge, although that is dependent on weather and other conditions. It will take about four hours to fully recharge the batteries on each bus.

Rochester Public Transit expects the electric buses will transport more than 90,000 passengers each year. City officials say more than 11,000 gallons of diesel fuel would be needed to provide transportation to that many people using traditional buses.

Federal funds provided about 63 percent of the funding for the $3.6 million project. Each bus cost about $1.3 million and the new charging infrastructure. A price tag of about $1 million.

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