Operating every 30 minutes between the Crowne Plaza Hotel and Holiday Inn Express and then out to terminals 1 and 2 at Dublin Airport, the project has been brought about by a three way partnership between Volvo Bus, Crowne Plaza Hotel (part of the Tifco Hotel Group) and ESB – Ireland’s leading energy supplier, to replace the previous diesel fuelled bus service.
The vehicle is a Generation 2 Volvo 7900e and will be the first commercial electric bus to enter service in Ireland with charging being provided outside the Crowne Plaza Hotel by a high power CCS combo 2 150kW charger showing the flexibility of the Generation 2 product.
Nick Page, Managing Director for Volvo Bus UK & Ireland, said: “We are excited to see the 7900e entering service in and around Dublin Airport. This is the culmination of 24 months of planning and eventual installation of the required infrastructure for this first of its type electric bus to enter operation anywhere in Ireland.
“The 7900e is a proven vehicle having been tried and tested in countries across Europe and we know the significant contribution it can make to improving air quality. Specifically it met with the requirements, vision and commitment of Tifco to provide a sustainable, quiet and comfortable shuttle service for their passengers.
“More than 150 7900e buses have already been sold and are now in service throughout Europe. In the UK we have recently had six 7900e electric buses commence a similar shuttle provision at Birmingham Airport, with a further eight being adopted for town service use in Harrogate.
“For a considerable time now it has been our vision to develop a range of vehicles to deliver improved air quality for those who live and work in towns and cities. Along with the 7900e, these solutions include hybrids, full electric and flexible charging options.
“The 7900e delivers well to wheel greenhouse gas emission benefits as well as zero tailpipe emissions in and around the airport for travellers and those who work there.”
Garret O’Neill, General Manager for the Crowne Plaza Dublin Airport & Holiday Inn Express Dublin Airport, said: “As a company we are always looking to the future and adopting facilities and services that will improve our guests’ experiences and benefit our local community and environment. Over the past number of years, we have taken a number of significant measures to reduce the hotels’ carbon footprint. While the purchase of the new Volvo 7900e electric bus is a significant financial investment for the hotel, we believe it will deliver long term benefits for both the customer and the local environment.”
Pat O’Doherty, Chief Executive of ESB, said: “ESB is committed to a low carbon energy future, powered by clean electricity, so we are delighted to be involved in this initiative to put the first fully-electric bus onto Irish roads. Working closely with the Tifco Hotel Group, our Smart Energy Services team installed an advanced charge point system that integrates with the airport shuttle schedule to allow the bus to operate seamlessly throughout the day.”
Owned by Irish Hotel Group Tifco, the four star Crowne Plaza Hotel sits in 85 acres of parkland close to its sister hotel the three star Holiday Inn Express and Dublin Airport.