New Technology Buses for The Link Service
New Technology Buses for The Link Service Will Help Clean Auckland’s Air
Infratil today announced that it is replacing the entire fleet used on The Link bus service in Auckland with 20 new-technology, low-emission buses.
“These buses will improve the environment on Auckland’s streets, by helping to clean the air. They have the very latest European engine technology and surpass European environmental standards. The new buses’ interiors and exteriors are being especially designed for The Link and will be more comfortable and better for users” said Bill Rae, Managing Director of Infratil’s public transport operations.
The new buses will be the first in New Zealand to meet the latest European Union emission standard, Euro 4. The buses will also meet the even tougher Euro 5 standard, as soon as New Zealand’s diesel is upgraded to reduce its sulphur content.
The Auckland Regional Council has reported that public transport vehicles cause only 3% of air pollution in Auckland. The new buses will help reduce that even further. Compared to the old Link buses, the new buses will deliver significant reductions in exhaust emissions:
unburnt fuel reduced by 58% carbon monoxide reduced by 67% nitrogen oxides reduced by 56% particulate matter reduced by 94%
The engine technology and chassis for the buses is being provided by Volvo. The bus bodies will be purpose designed and built for The Link service by Designline in Ashburton.
The new buses will have additional standing space and wider doors to accommodate the many short-distance passengers that use The Link and to speed up access and exit. The buses will have modern streamlined styling and will stand out from other buses operating in Auckland’s CBD.
Air conditioning will be fitted for improved passenger comfort, together with in-bus displays showing the bus location and regularly updated news.
The service will continue to be called The Link, but the new buses are getting a distinctive new exterior and interior look.
The new buses will enter service in May next year.
“The Link has become an Auckland icon since its introduction in 1996. It now carries 2.5 million commuters, shoppers, students and tourists around the city every year. For many Aucklanders, The Link exemplifies what is good about getting around town by bus – it’s frequent, convenient, easy to use, value for money and environmentally friendly.
“We want to make The Link even better and have been working with Auckland City and ARTA on service improvements which will result in our customers getting a more reliable, faster more comfortable service. Why waste your time in the car when the bus is better? We want this upgrade to make a lot more Aucklanders question the relative merits of car versus bus and make the switch to bus travel”, Mr Rae said.
“When Infratil made its investment in our business last year they charged us with finding ways to materially enhance the quality of the public transport services we provide. Since then we have invested in improving the look of our buses, better driver training and route management systems. Last week we purchased a new ferry for Auckland, but it is especially pleasing to be able to buy these absolutely top of the line new buses. They will provide our customers with a better more comfortable service, and our drivers and mechanics with better equipment. And we’re helping to clean Auckland’s air. I feel we have raised the bar with this development” Mr Rae concluded.