(Compressed natural gas buses are quieter, more environmentally friendly, and cost less to operate, according to BC Transit)

Over two dozen new medium-duty Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) BC Transit buses are slated to arrive in Victoria over the next few weeks.

The 25 new buses are part of a plan to introduce 80 of these cleaner, greener, buses to the Greater Victoria transit region by the end of the year. A total of 99 CNG buses are planned to go into operation across B.C. this year.

“The average age of the fleet in Victoria is 12 years old and we’ll have new vehicles start to come in January 2020. By the end of 2020, the average age of our fleet will be 6 years,” said BC Transit spokesperson Jonathon Dyck when the plan was first announced last year.

The first of these buses began arriving in January 2020 and went into operation the next month.

Each of the 30-foot buses has room for 24 seated passengers and 20 standing passengers, comes equipped with a bike rack which accommodates three-inch tires, white LED destination sign and full driver doors to protect operators and commuters alike.

CNG buses are expected to have both a long term economic and environmental benefit, offering a reduction in tailpipe emissions and operational costs.

Each bus cost $455,000 and was purchased through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP).

The federal and B.C. provincial governments each contributed 40 per cent of the cost, while the Victoria Regional Transit Commission funded the remaining 20 per cent.