New UMD Electric Bus, Wrap Unveiled; DTA Adding Seven Buses to Fleet

Taylor Holt
Updated: October 12, 2018 06:45 PM

Elisabeth Banjo and Danny Boie are two UMD sophomores that people will be seeing a lot more of around town. They and several other students are displayed on the first of seven new electric DTA buses that will be hitting the city's streets. 


"I think it's really cool just to know you are on there, and you're going to be around the Duluth area," said Bango.

Friday, UMD and the DTA announced the new additions and the university's new bus wrap advertisement on the first bus, at a press conference at the university.

"The university is enthusiastic about this bus and wanted to show their support for this innovative technology and specifically this project by wrapping this bus," said DTA General Manager, Phil Pumphrey.

The new addition is part of the DTA's NOLO or no or low emission grant from the federal transit administration. The project's goal is to show how effective the buses are in Duluth's cold weather and changes in elevation.

"It's entirely electric powered with exception of our auxiliary heater because you know from this week, we have very frequent changes in the weather," said Pumphrey.

In terms of space, the electric buses are a little bigger than the regular ones. There are also more windows to see out of, but officials say most importantly it will big a big benefit to the environment.

"Sustainability is a core value for our campus and this program and the bus is another example of the way we have sustainability," said UMD Vice Chancellor Lisa Erwin. 

Students like Boie say having more transportation will be a big help.

"It's nice because I think the waitlist currently for parking for getting the off-campus parking permit is like in the hundreds, so being able to be living down on like Superior Street and just hopping on the 6th and getting to school in minutes is super convenient," said Boie.

He says sustainability is a plus.

"I think it's pretty cool especially in Duluth where nature is really important to us," Boie added.

Erwin says the university recently renewed their U-pass contract with the DTA, and says the timing of the new addition is perfect.

"The first students to ride the bus will be tomorrow (Friday) during our homecoming parade and it will be in use shortly afterwards," said Erwin.

The buses are $1 million dollars each. 


Taylor Holt

Copyright 2019 WDIO-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

Relay Media Amp

DFL-endorsed McEwen wins out over incumbent Sen. Simonson

Smith, Lewis advance in Minnesota Senate race

St. Ann's cleared of possible chemical leak

Biden selects Kamala Harris as running mate

Slow but steady voter turnout at Superior and Duluth polls for primary election

Proctor going hybrid route, Hermantown vote next week