Thursday, 22 August 2019


The Irish National Transport Authority (NTA) has published in July a notice for procurement of 600 hybrid double-deck buses. NTA has commenced the procurement process as a key element of the BusConnects programme. 
 The (NTA) is the transport authority for the Greater Dublin Area and the public transport licensing agency for Ireland.

NTA intends to enter into a Single Supplier Framework Agreement for the buses.

This process is part of the transition to low emission buses, including electric vehicles, for the urban public bus fleet, as provided for in Project Ireland 2040 and the Climate Action Plan. 
The Framework Agreement is intended to permit the purchase of double-deck diesel-electric hybrid buses from the supplier during the period of the Framework Agreement. 
It is envisaged that up to 600 buses may be purchased under this Agreement over a period of around five years. The first delivery could take place before the end of 2020. BusConnects aims to expand the current bus system in the Dublin region by creating 230km of dedicated bus lanes and redesigning of the network.

NTA expects the new hybrid buses to be at least 30% more energy efficient than current diesel-only buses, and as a result will reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions. The NTA also intend that the new buses will be capable of zero-tailpipe-emissions operation – which means buses should be able to drive a certain amount of time without using the diesel-engine. Combined with the overall reduction in energy consumption, this will contribute to an improvement in air quality in the Irish cities that will be served by these vehicles.”

The buses to be provided under the Framework Agreement are intended to be double-deck vehicles with a minimum of 40 seats on the upper deck, a minimum of 17 seats (not including longitudinal tip-up seats) on the lower deck and an overall capacity (including standees) of 70 passengers or greater, subject to the vehicle length not exceeding 11.50 metres. Clearly this double deck condition excludes many of the European brands and will probably give Wright Bus, Optare and Alexander Dennis the best chance of winning business.