The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) is currently in the process of transitioning its entire 1,600-bus fleet and associated operating facilities to zero-emission (ZE) technologies. As part of a team, Foursquare ITP conducted a series of interviews with transit agencies leading the way with BEB deployments about their experiences designing facilities for their converted fleets. The team spoke with agencies around the US and Canada and synthesized the results into an actionable memo to guide WMATA’s facility design process moving forward.
Full fleet conversion to ZEBs is a direct response to the WMATA Board of Directors’ resolution adopted in June 2021. This resolution requires the agency to transition to a 100% ZE bus (ZEB) fleet by 2045 and cease the purchase of internal combustion engine buses (ICEBs), including diesel, diesel-hybrids, and compressed natural gas (CNG) by 2030. By operating ZEBs, WMATA will improve regional air quality, reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and provide customers with a quieter, more comfortable ride. However, preparing facilities for this change without disrupting service is daunting, especially when ZEBs are still so new to the market. WMATA wanted to understand the state of the practice for designing BEB-compliant facilities before starting out, to learn from their peers.