The Victorian Government is set to recontract 30 per cent of the metropolitan bus network as part of its push towards a cleaner and more sustainable bus fleet, with all new buses on Victoria’s public transport routes to be zero-emissions from 2025.

Victorian Minister for Public Transport, Ben Carroll, made the announcement, with the recontracting process supporting the state’s transition to a zero-emissions bus network, providing more modern and reliable services for Victorians.

Creating a greener fleet is also part of Victoria’s Bus Plan to improve passenger experience and deliver value for money for Victorians, with new, greener buses critical to the Victorian Government’s goal of net zero emissions by 2045.

Under the recontracting process, the market will be asked to submit proposals on how to boost passenger experience, deliver network and operating efficiencies and optimise the transition to zero emissions buses, building on the Victorian Government’s $20 million Zero Emissions Bus (ZEB) Trial.

The trial is informing the transition of around 4,000 diesel buses in the state’s public fleet, including around 2,200 in regional Victoria, to zero emissions.

The trial is also fostering vital local industry partnerships – such as with energy providers and manufacturers – that will be needed to achieve the transition across the state.

The Victorian Government will support existing and any new operators through the transition to the new contracts, which will commence on 1 July 2025.

The new contracts bring consistency to commercial arrangements across the metropolitan bus network, in line with the ten year contracts other operators signed in 2018 and the Metropolitan Bus Franchise signed in 2022.

Mr Carroll said, “These new metropolitan bus contracts support Victoria’s Bus Plan and will help tackle emissions on the bus network – which is critical to Victoria meeting our commitment of net zero emissions by 2045.

“We’re providing greater flexibility to deliver a more modern, efficient and reliable bus network that attracts more passengers and gets them where they need to go.”

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