2 new CNG buses to hit Lafayette's streets

01 25, 2013 by Daily Advertiser

Lafayette Consolidated Government is on track to have more than 20 buses fueled by compressed natural gas and on the streets before the end of this year.

On Thursday, LCG officials unveiled two new CNG buses, part of the Lafayette Transit System. They are expected to run routes by the end of this month, bringing the total number of CNG buses in service here to seven.

The exteriors of the new buses are decorated with a University of Louisiana at Lafayette-inspired variation on the "Fueled by Nature" theme, featuring fall-colored leaves and UL logos.

LCG spent $465,000 in Federal Transit Administration funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 to purchase the two new buses from the Gillig Corp., according to a news release. LCG did not use any local tax dollars to buy the new vehicles.

City-Parish President Joey Durel said promoting CNG as a viable fuel will not only help the United States secure energy independence eventually, but it also will help a thriving industry that's vital to Lafayette's economy. Durel also pointed to Lafayette's two CNG fueling stations.

"It's an industry that is so very important to our region, state, parish and city," Durel said. "We're giving people the ability to convert their personal vehicles over to compressed natural gas."

LCG also is in the process of acquiring another 12 CNG buses from Gwinnett County, Ga., as part of a federal grant. Those dozen buses are expected to be in service before the end of this year, at which point LTS will have a total of 38 buses in its fleet, including 22 CNG buses.