5 Ways our New Electric Buses Make for a Positive Future

Electric BusCapital Metro is working with Austin Energy to introduce new all-electric buses to the city early next year. Students at Campbell Elementary are helping to design the look of the buses as a way for us to celebrate the future of Austin.

Austin Energy is our partner in assuring these buses will run on reliable, cost-effective, sustainable, clean energy. Austin Energy, like CapMetro, is committed to helping Central Texas become a cleaner, healthier place by powering our buses with zero-emission, renewable energy sources.

Here are just a few positive things electric buses will do for our growing city.

  1. Zero emissions!

Electric buses produce zero emissions. No harmful smog forming exhaust, no air pollution, no tailpipes. Fewer emissions keep our skies clear, our water clean, the earth green and the critters safe. We share this planet with plants and animals, and we breathe and drink the same air and water. Doing our part means embracing new technology that can help our local city and our overall planet.

  1. Electric buses are cleaner from beginning to end.

Clean has a nice ring to it. Not only do the new buses produce no emissions once they’re on our roads. But, because they’re powered by renewable Austin Energy Green Choice electricity (which comes from the sun and the wind, not fossil fuels), they avoid damaging the environment at the source too. So you can enjoy the breeze and know that it’s also helping to make smarter energy and transportation a reality.

  1. Electric buses are quieter.

Whether you’re riding in an electric bus or outside near them, you don’t hear the motor running, which reduces noise pollution. You can hear the air conditioner and other mechanical noises, but they are significantly quieter inside and out for people and animals.

  1. Electric buses emit less heat.

Less heat can be a good thing, especially in the middle of July.  Standing next to an electric bus at a bus stop will be cooler and more comfortable.

  1. Electric buses produce less waste.

Using less oil, fluids and coolants means less waste product to dispose of. This not only makes maintenance easier, it also means there are fewer chances to spill and pollute local waterways.

* * *

The new CapMetro bus fleet launches in January. It will be backed up by 100% Texas wind power, courtesy of Austin Energy.

“Every Child Can Create”

Kevin_Abeyta
Campbell Elementery’s Kevin Abeyta

Capital Metro is working with Creative Action and Austin ISD to invite students to create designs to decorate the new electric buses that are coming in January.

Kevin Abeyta is the art specialist at Campbell Elementary, where he works to inspire students to express themselves through creative arts. Selected artwork from students in Mr. Abeyta’s classes will be applied as full-bus wraps on the first two electric buses in CapMetro’s fleet.

We asked Mr. Abeyta about the contest and how he teaches his art classes.

What do you do at Campbell Elementary?

The short answer is I encourage each student who walks into the art studio to express themselves in a healthy, positive way through art.

What do you aim to achieve for your students?

​My goal is to foster a safe, accepting and welcoming environment that allows each and every student who crosses the door into the art studio the freedom to express who they are no matter the skill level. Process over product. Every child can create art if they are given the encouragement and freedom to do so.

For this project, Mr. Abeyta is teaching students about various artists’ techniques as inspiration for the electric bus artwork contest. We asked him to tell us why their stories and work are important for students to know.

Can you tell us about some of the artists you’re teaching them about and why you chose them?

​My goal is to honor the culture of children who come into the art studio. We’re learning about artists of color and differing genders. Two in particular we’re focusing on are Romare Bearden and Kehinde Wiley.

Romare Bearden

Romare Bearden’s work dealt with both the urban and rural viewpoints of African Americans. His style is a perfect fit for a project highlighting these aspects of Austin.

We are using Romare’s collage technique to create various scenes and places around Austin. Each student’s personal vision of how they view places around the city can be showcased, and this technique provides a more hands-on style and unified approach to the final artwork.

Kehinde Wiley

Kehinde Wiley is a contemporary artist who creates vibrant, striking portraits of people of color. He is well known for painting the presidential portrait of Barack Obama. His powerful style and depiction of subjects is the focus for our fifth graders, who are creating their own portraits.

My hope is that in seeing these artists and their work, students will be inspired to go forward and explore art and the world around them on their own. The more artists of color are celebrated and taught, the more children of color can see the beauty and power that they possess inside them.

The new Capital Metro bus fleet launches in January. It will be backed up by 100%-Texas wind power, courtesy of Austin Energy.

The future belongs to our children, and we are super excited to see what they come up with to help us celebrate.

 

Stuff the Bus and Help Your Central Texas Neighbors

Stuff the Bus 2019CapMetro is joining together with Whole Foods Market and the Central Texas Food Bank once again for Stuff the Bus!

The past couple of years, we’ve been able to raise enough to provide 100,000 meals for those most in need throughout the Austin area. And we’ll be doing so again this year from Dec. 6-8 at Whole Foods locations all over Austin.

Every $1 donated creates 4 meals for our Central Texas neighbors in need and helps us reach our goal.

If you’re not able to make it to a Whole Foods, you can also donate online.

5​ ​Halloween​ ​Costume Ideas from CapMetro

Halloween’s a coming and you gotta get it right, we know. CapMetro’s focused on serving the customer, and so we’re here to help in whatever way we can.

And, so, here’re some options for you next week! (Modeled​ ​by​ ​CapMetro​ ​buses​ ​themselves,​ ​naturally …)

Homemade Ghost

Ghost BusA cheap costume that somehow never gets old. While there are lots of ghosts to choose from throughout the history of pop culture (Casper, Slimer, Samara, etc.), there’s something so simple and classic about just cutting some eye holes in a white sheet, throwing it over your head and calling it a day. And hey, if it’s good enough for Charlie Brown and Michael Myers, then it’s good enough for us all.

Scoops Ahoy, from Stranger Things

Scoops Ahoy BusAfter the release of the third season of Stranger Things, you can bet we’ll see a bunch of its most iconic costumes out in the streets. And while you might think the Scoops uniform would be pretty easy to recreate, good luck replicating Steve “The Hair” Harrington’s luscious locks. No amount of volumizing shampoo or lifting spray can clone those genetics. We know. Life just ain’t fair.

Daniel Johnston Homage

Hi How Are You BusAssuming you don’t have the vocal and/or songwriting chops, there’s no better way to pay homage to Daniel Johnston than a shout out to his Hi, How Are You frog. A pioneer of lo-fi sound and a staple of the Austin music scene, there’s bound to be a few out there “Walking the Cow” in honor of this legend.

Detective Pikachu

Pikachu BusYou don’t need to be a detective to know that Pikachu will be the cutest costume this season. Double points to the dude who turns his Pokémon costume into a pun by carrying around a bowl of yellowfin tuna, thus evolving into the ultra-rare “Poké Man.”

Classic Zombie

PRM 191001 DT Sponsored Content Halloween BusesJust like the genre itself, zombie costumes will never stay dead. Come Halloween night, we’ll be sure to see a bunch of Tallahassees, Wichitas and other “insert iconic city names” roaming the streets. But after a night of imbibing, don’t join the heard of the walking drunk. Just “Double Tap” the CapMetro App and hop a safe ride home.

More People Are Riding CapMetro! 

MorePeopleRiding_NewsBanner

Our focus at CapMetro is on the customer. We serve the people of Central Texas and, to do the job right, we’ve got to provide a positive rider experience. 

That was the thinking behind our Cap Remap changes in 2018. We needed to give you a better ride, a more reliable ride for more people to try transitIf you need to get to work, we need to get you there on time. 

You’ve responded by taking us up on our offer of better service to the tune of a 4.5% increase in ridership for the year after Cap Remap. It’s continued with increases in the months since that anniversary too, with last month charting a better than 8% increase over September 2018!

That focus on the customer is also what’s driven a lot of what we’ve done over the past year or two: new bus shelters, better technology that powers our real-time data, more timely and accurate information and messaging to our customers, opening the new Westgate Transit Center … and the list goes on. 

In the coming year, you’ll see even more from us, with new Pickup service zones, more than 100 new bus shelters to provide better shade and protection from the elements and the new CapMetro App with its better experience. 

Thanks for your confidence in us. Thanks for making us a part of your daily experience. And, thank you for riding. 

Llegando más alto: Noticias y puntos destacados recientes

Reaching Higher

¡La cantidad de pasajeros aumenta!

Un año después, Cap Remap ha cumplido lo que prometió: crear un sistema de autobuses más frecuente, más confiable y más conectado. Ha mejorado la experiencia de los usuarios al triplicar la cantidad de rutas que pasan cada 15 minutos, los 7 días de la semana, y al mejorar la accesibilidad de las paradas de autobús mediante nuevas aceras y más marquesinas de autobuses para las comunidades que anteriormente carecían de servicio.

Cantidad de pasajeros desde Cap Remap:

  • Aumento del 8.9 % en julio
  • Aumento del 4.5 % durante todo el año
  • Hasta 11 de 12 meses

Austin & Manor Get a Pickup

El servicio Pickup llega a Austin y Manor 

Llevamos el tan solicitado servicio de transporte Pickup a los usuarios de Capital Metro en Austin y Manor.

Los residentes de cuatro vecindarios de Austin se beneficiaron de los siguientes servicios Pickup en agosto:

  • Pickup East ATX
  • Pickup Exposition
  • Pickup Northeast ATX
  • Pickup Walnut Creek

El servicio Pickup en Manor cubrió una ruta de transporte de enlace de bajo funcionamiento y fue un éxito inmediato: ¡aumentó la cantidad diaria de pasajeros de la ruta eliminada en un 600%!

Electric BusUn 2019 lleno de trabajo logra excelentes resultados

Ha sido un período increíblemente productivo para Capital Metro, con una combinación positiva de trabajo duro y grandes recompensas:

  • Aprobó la compra de los primeros cuatro autobuses eléctricos en el centro de Texas.
  • Recibió una subvención de 2.6 millones de dólares que nos permitió aumentar la flota a 10 autobuses eléctricos.
  • Inició la construcción de una nueva cochera de autobuses para los autobuses eléctricos, con estaciones de recarga con capacidad para 214 vehículos.
  • ¡Innovó en nuestra nueva estación del centro!
  • Agregó nuevas vías y otras mejoras que duplicarán la capacidad de MetroRail.
  • Se asoció con la Fundación Austin Parks para ampliar el servicio de verano en Barton Springs.
  • ¡Fue nombrada Agencia del Año 2019 por la Asociación de Tránsito de Texas!

OCCY lo éxitos continuaron

¡El transporte en el centro de Texas se encuentra muy activo! ¡Eche un vistazo a esto!

  • Inauguró el primer carril en sentido contrario solo para autobuses en asociación con la ciudad de Austin.
  • Proporcionó viajes gratuitos para los empleados federales durante el cierre del gobierno.
  • Abrió nuevas estaciones de MetroRapid en ambas líneas, incluidas Broken Spoke y 31st Street.
  • Volvió a inaugurar el programa MetroBike Shelter sin costo anual.
  • Construyó un nuevo Centro de Control de Operaciones, para que las operaciones de los autobuses sean más eficaces y efectivas.
  • Recibió el premio nacional de seguridad de la Asociación Estadounidense de Transporte Público.

Project Connect

Project Connect

Más opciones • Mejor tránsito • Servicio a más personas

Project Connect se desarrollará sobre Cap Remap y proveerá al centro de Texas un sistema moderno de transporte público confiable y eficaz.

  • 2 líneas de tránsito a prueba de congestión para transportar mejor a las personas en el centro de la ciudad y conectar el Aeropuerto Internacional de Austin-Bergstrom con el sistema más grande.
  • Más Park & Rides y servicio MetroExpress, además de puntos de acceso al transporte y servicio de transporte de enlace en los vecindarios de toda la región.
  • Flota de autobuses totalmente eléctricos que reduce considerablemente las emisiones y con tecnología moderna para mantener nuestra alta calidad de vida.

MetroRapidNuevas líneas de MetroRapid que brindarán servicio a toda la ciudad, incluidos los siguientes corredores:

  • Tech Ridge
  • Cameron/Dessau
  • Burnet
  • Loyola
  • Manor
  • MLK
  • Calle 7°
  • Pleasant Valley
  • South Lamar
  • Manchaca.

El plan de la comunidad

Para que Project Connect funcione, necesitamos su ayuda. Esto es lo que hemos estado haciendo en la comunidad:

  • Organizamos 101 reuniones comunitarias en 20 zonas postales.
  • Recibimos 2,288 visitas a nuestras juntas públicas virtuales.
  • Obtuvimos 595 comentarios de esas visitas.

Puede seguir la promoción de Project Connect mediante nuestros tableros de registro de participación en CapMetro.org/Participate.

In Action

Una visión a largo plazo en acción

¡Project Connect es una inversión generacional que ya está mejorando el centro de Texas actual!

  • El Centro de tránsito Westgate abrió sus puertas en junio, lo cual eliminó hasta 200 automóviles de la carretera.
  • En marzo, ¡la estación del centro comenzó las remodelaciones que aumentarán la frecuencia y la capacidad del servicio de MetroRail!
  • Una nueva instalación en el norte de Austin creará espacio para nuestra futura flota de autobuses totalmente eléctricos.

Reaching Higher: News & Recent Highlights

Reaching Higher

Ridership on the Rise!

One year in, Cap Remap has done what it promised — created a more frequent, more reliable and better connected bus system. It’s improved the customer’s experience by tripling the number of routes that come every 15 minutes, 7 days a week and by increasing bus stop accessibility, with new sidewalks and more bus shelters for previously underserved communities.

Ridership Since Cap Remap:

  • Up 8.9% in July 2019
  • Up 4.5% for the full year
  • Up 11 of 12 months

Austin & Manor Get a Pickup

We brought the on-demand service Pickup back for CapMetro customers in Austin and Manor.

Residents of four Austin neighborhoods got to benefit from Pickup in August 2019:

  • Pickup East ATX
  • Pickup Exposition
  • Pickup Northeast ATX
  • Pickup Walnut Creek

Pickup Manor replaced a low-performing circulator route and was a hit right away, already increasing the route’s daily ridership numbers by 600%!

Electric Bus

A Busy 2019 Brings Great Results

It’s been an incredibly productive time for CapMetro, with a healthy mix of hard
work and big rewards:

  • Approved the purchase of the first four electric buses in Central Texas.
  • Received $2.6 million grant enabling us to increase the size of our electric bus fleet to 10.
  • Began work on a new bus yard for electric buses, with charging stations for 214 vehicles.
  • Broke ground on our new Downtown Station!
  • Added new track and other improvements that will increase MetroRail’s capacity.
  • Partnered with Austin Parks Foundation to increase summer service to Barton Springs.
  • Named 2019 Agency of the Year by the Texas Transit Association!

OCC

And the Hits Just Kept on Coming

There’s so much happening with transportation in Central Texas! Get a load of this:

  • Launched the first bus-only contraflow lane in partnership with the city of Austin.
  • Provided free rides for federal employees during government shutdown.
  • Opened new MetroRapid Stations along both lines, including Broken Spoke & 31st Street.
  • Re-launched MetroBike Shelter program with no annual fee.
  • Built new Operations Control Center, for more efficient and effective bus operations.
  • Received national safety award from American Public Transportation Association.

Project Connect

Project Connect

More Options • Better Transit • Serving More People

Project Connect will build on the foundation of Cap Remap and provide Central Texas a modern system of reliable and efficient public transit.

  • 2 lines of congestion-proof transit to better move people through downtown and connect ABIA to the larger system.
  • Fully electric fleet that provides dramatically lower emissions and modern technology to maintain our high quality of life.
  • More Park & Rides and Express Routes: Plus mobility hubs and neighborhood circulators throughout the region.

MetroRapid

New MetroRapid lines that will serve the entire city, including these corridors:

  • Tech Ridge
  • Cameron/Dessau
  • Burnet
  • Loyola
  • Manor
  • MLK
  • 7th Street
  • Pleasant Valley
  • South Lamar
  • Manchaca

The Community’s Plan

For Project Connect to work, we need your help. Here’s what we’ve been up to in the community:

  • 101 — community meetings held across 20 zip codes
  • 2,288 — visits received to our virtual open houses
  • 595 — comments collected from those visits

In Action

A Long-Term Vision Already in Action

Project Connect is a generational investment that is already improving Central Texas today!

  • Westgate Transit Center opened in June, removing up to 200 cars from the road.
  • In March, Downtown Station began renovations that will increase the frequency and capacity of MetroRail service!
  • A new facility in North Austin will make space for our all-electric bus fleet of the future.