National Drive Electric Week continues through Sept. 22. Join us as we celebrate the role electric vehicles play in reducing greenhouse gas emissions by riding one of DART’s 35-foot Proterra Catalyst battery-electric buses.
Did you know Proterra buses produce zero tailpipe emissions and decrease your dependency on fossil fuels? When you ride an electric bus, you help us improve air quality in North Texas. Each time a zero-emission bus replaces a clean diesel or compressed natural gas vehicle, emissions are reduced by more than 200,000 pounds of carbon dioxide annually.
These buses are easy to find, especially if you travel around downtown Dallas or along the Stemmons Corridor (I-35E).
DART operates its electric buses on Route 749, which connects the Convention Center and Southwestern Medical District/Parkland stations. Simply riding these ultra-quiet buses is a neat experience, but you also can reach these places of interest and employment centers along the way:
- Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center Dallas
- Omni Dallas Hotel & Restaurants on Lamar
- Dallas West End Historic District
- Perot Museum of Nature and Science
- American Airlines Center and Victory Station
- Dallas Design District
- Dallas Market Center
- Southwestern Medical District and Parkland Hospital
Two overhead fast-chargers at Convention Center Station enable the buses to power up via a roof-mounted charging dock while they wait for customers. The vehicles recharge quickly, going from a 10% state of charge to 90% in about 10 minutes.
Eight battery packs power the bus – six on the bottom and two on the top. Each vehicle can travel up to 30 miles on a full charge, which is more than enough for a round trip on Route 749.
At night or during maintenance activities, the buses can plug into one of two plug-in depot chargers, located at the bus operating facility. The buses start the next day of service at full power after an initial quick charge at Convention Center Station.
DART began operating the Proterra buses in July 2018. The agency received a $7.5 million grant from the Federal Transit Administration’s Low or No Emission Vehicle Deployment Program (LoNo Program) toward the purchase of seven electric buses and the infrastructure to charge and maintain them. Grants from the LoNo program are helping more public transportation agencies integrate these cutting-edge vehicles into their fleets.