Press Release – Tranzurban
In recognition of its long-term commitment to electrifying public transport, Wellington bus operator Tranzurban won the Green Gold Award at the annual Wellington Gold Awards.
At a special awards ceremony held at TSB Arena in Wellington last night, Tranzurban was announced as the winner of the Green Gold category for its commitment to building a modern and reliable electric bus fleet and for reducing carbon emissions. Accepting the award were Paul Snelgrove, Managing Director of Tranzit, the parent company of Tranzurban and Keven Snelgrove, Tranzit’s Transport and Operations Director.
The two brothers were delighted their fourth generation, family-owned company was acknowledged for its commitment to growing electric vehicle (EV) public transport in New Zealand and thanked all those who have helped them along the way. This included EECA (Energy Efficiency & Conservation Authority’s Low Emission Vehicles Contestable Fund), the Auckland University of Technology; Tauranga based Kiwi Bus Builders where all the company’s EV buses are built and Greater Wellington Regional Council, who introduced modern electric buses into Wellington in 2018. He also referenced how Tranzurban was bringing adding 31 more double-deck electric buses into Wellington over the next two years and its upcoming conversion of two double-deck diesel buses to electric.
“We have 31 double deck electric buses on build now and we are very proud that our EV buses have been built in New Zealand. It cost us more, but we are proud to protect New Zealand business.
“We do have a number of diesel double deck buses on the road in Wellington … and the first of these has arrived in Masterton and this will be repowered 100% electric. That will be repowered in our workshop by trained apprentices through our own training so it’s a big proud moment for the team.”
“Lastly, I would like to thank, through lockdown, that our Tranzurban drivers kept the Wellington public transport system going. I am proud of those guys and everybody else,” said Paul.
Keven gave a huge shout out to his team, which includes specialist EV mechanics, engineers, and drivers.
“It’s been a four-year journey this electrification of vehicles in Wellington. It’s been a hell of a ride. But the most important people to us is our team who made this happen. We have around 20 workshop team members who have gone from working on our Euro 6 diesel bus technology into EVs and these guys have done an amazing job to make this happen. But the most important ones to thank are our team who goes and drive them.”
Tranzit’s EV journey began in 2014 after it partnered with Auckland University of Technology in a joint application to the Energy Efficiency & Conservation Authority’s Low Emission Vehicles Contestable Fund. After developing EV1, New Zealand’s first commercially operated 100% battery powered electric bus now based in Auckland, the company’s subsidiary Tranzurban was launched and then collaborated with GWRC to introduce 10 EVDDs and supporting charging infrastructure into Wellington in 2018. All these EVDDs were built in Tauranga at Kiwi Bus Builders, as will the new 31 EVDDs be. Without AUT and EECA’s support and foresight, coupled with Tranzit and Tranzurban’s commitment to a sustainable future, Wellington would not be where it is today.
Keven has previously explained the environmental benefits of Tranzurban’s Wellington EV fleet. He says the 10 EV double decks buses regularly travel over 2000km in a single day, meaning approximately over 1300 litres of diesel is saved and around 3.54 tonnes of CO2 is prevented from entering Wellington’s atmosphere every single day. When then the company begins operating its full fleet of 41 EV double decks in Wellington, these environmental benefits will be even more significant. Tranzurban’s other buses include 225 Euro 6 diesel buses, which meet the highest global emission standards.
“Since our EV journey began in 2014, we have been constantly learning and innovating, paving the way for others to follow,” said Keven.
The Wellington Gold Awards were established in 1999 and celebrate excellence and enterprise of businesses in Wellington Region.