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Fleet and Technologies

Cutting-edge technologies allow us to reduce the environmental impacts of our operations, improve accessibility, make our system easier to use and ensure our customers reach their destinations safely and on time.

For information about ongoing initiatives to expand and improve our fleet and infrastructure, visit our Vehicle and Infrastructure Improvements section.

We have a diverse fleet of low and zero emissions vehicles including (at Dec 31, 2016):

  • 262 electric trolley buses
  • 116 compressed natural gas (CNG) buses
  • 226 diesel-electric hybrid buses
  • 697 low-emissions diesel buses
  • 108 gasoline community shuttle buses
  • 47 diesel community shuttle buses
  • 4 battery-electric buses
  • 3 SeaBus vessels

Contracted Transit Services' fleet includes:

  • 48 conventional diesel and hybrid buses
  • 39 gasoline community shuttle buses
  • 307 HandyDART vehicles

Each type of vehicle requires specialized training and expertise to operate and maintain everything from hydraulic brakes to self-diagnostic onboard computers. Out on the road, our multi-skilled Road Services Teams provide a quick response to a wide range of technical issues, which ensures minimal disruption to the travelling public.

For the past 60+ years, trolleys have played a central role in Metro Vancouver's urban transit network. Today, with a fleet of 188 40-foot conventional and 74 60-foot articulated trolleys, CMBC operates the second largest and most modern electric trolley fleet in North America. Each trolley utilizes a network of overhead wires that span 315 kms through Vancouver and Burnaby, providing an environmentally friendly transit solution.

We've been industry leaders in testing alternative fuels for decades. In 2006, CMBC rolled out 50 new Compressed Natural Gas-powered buses. Since then, a new CNG engine has been developed that provides better fuel economy and requires less maintenance. CMBC has retrofitted a small number of buses with the new generation of CNG engines to test their performance in our Metro Vancouver environment. Using low emission diesel technologies, CMBC has retrofitted over 30 older buses with diesel particulate filters which reduce particulate emissions by up to 90%. Since 2009, CMBC has been operating a fleet of 40-foot and 60-foot hybrid diesel-electric with excellent environmental results.

In 2010, CMBC launched an Anti-Idling Campaign that has reduced idling by 35%. This translates to significant reductions in carbon emissions and substantial savings on engine wear and fuel consumption. Our operators turn off buses if they're parked for more than three minutes, and our maintenance staff turn off buses that are awaiting service.

We subscribe to an industrial wastewater management program to ensure wastewater from our vehicle maintenance facilities is safely discharged. This includes state-of-the-art ultra-filtration treatment plants and bus wash water recycling systems. To further minimize any environmental impacts from spilled fluids, we use a system of trapping hoods and oil separators in the drainage systems at our bus loops and transit yards.

In 2012 we began retrofitting buses with new electric fan systems, replacing the former hydraulic cooling systems. Benefits already realized include reduced fuel consumption, lower noise and fewer maintenance issues.

In 2009, CMBC developed new LED lighting to replace the fluorescent tubes traditionally used inside our buses. The new LEDs use much less power and have a longer life, thereby eliminating the ongoing maintenance and environmental disposal processes required for fluorescent tubes. Exterior headlights are also being retrofitted with LED bulbs to improve visibility for bus operators and reduce maintenance costs.

The network is 100% accessible for customers with mobility aids and strollers. Visit our Accessible Transit section for more information.

All buses and shuttles in the CMBC network have been equipped with computer controlled Passenger Information Displays and loudspeaker announcement systems that inform passengers of upcoming stops. This makes navigating the system easier for passengers, especially when travelling on an unfamiliar route.

State-of-the-art transportation communication technology is used in conjunction with GPS units on our buses to provide real-time bus location information for passengers via our growing network of on-street information displays and our Real-Time Next Bus feature on our mobile website, m.translink.ca. Learn more about all the mobile services TransLink has to offer by visiting our Mobile Services page.

Our entire bus and shuttle fleet are quipped with bike racks. Visit our Bikes on Buses page for more information.

The presence of security cameras in our vehicles improves the safety and security of our transit operators and customers. The cameras serve to discourage vandalism, fare evasion, assaults, and assist with incident investigations. Visit our Safety & Security page for more information.