Limerick goes electric as new bus fleet hits the Treaty’s streets

Limerick is to become the first city in Ireland to get a fully electric bus service. Photo: Bus Éireann.

LIMERICK has gone electric as it is to become the first city in Ireland to have a fully electric bus fleet.

A fleet of 55 fully electric buses was launched this morning (Friday April 12) at Colbert Station by Transport Minister Eamon Ryan, marking a €54million investment into Limerick’s public transport infrastructure by the National Transport Authority (NTA).

The investment will see Bus Éireann operate over two million emission-free miles across Limerick every year, becoming the second place in Ireland, after Athlone, and the first Irish city to get a fully electric bus service.

34 of the buses are already in operation in Limerick, with a further 21 set to come on stream in early 2025.

35 Hitachi energy charging stations with 70 charging guns will power the new buses, with 15 currently installed and in operation. The rest will be rolled out in early 2025.

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Speaking at today’s launch, Transport Minister Eamon Ryan said that the increase in bus services across the county has been “transformative”.

According to figures from the NTA, over 4.6million bus journeys took place in Limerick in 2023, a 15 per cent increase on the previous year.

“Bus passenger numbers in Limerick City went up 15 per cent last year, and already up another five or six per cent for the first three months of this year,” the Minister said.

“And what we’re going to do is not just electrify the buses, the city buses, but increase the capacity by 70 per cent in the next two years.

“That’s effectively doubling because of the growth that’s already happened since the last time I was in Limerick,” the Green Party leader said.

Minister Ryan said that the Connecting Ireland bus project has been “spectacular” with passenger numbers up right across the country.

Bus Éireann Chief Executive Officer Stephen Kent added: “Our mission is to help make life better and this transformative €54million investment in new zero emission fleet, funded by the NTA, helps us reduce greenhouse gas emissions, providing a cleaner and greener public transport solution for everyone in Limerick City.”