Creating Cleaner, Environmentally Friendly Public Transit in Toronto

By Laelia Ajodhia-Nicholson | 7/21/2023

EVERY TIME YOU TAKE PUBLIC transit—a bus, subway or streetcar—you’ve made an environmentally friendly choice. Transit is accessible, affordable, available to everyone, and promotes the most efficient use of city planning and shared spaces. One full bus means up to 70 fewer single-occupancy cars on the road!

woman speaks at podium people watch in background
The Honourable Chrystia Freeland, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, delivers remarks at an event to announce a $700 million investment towards the electrification of the TTC’s bus fleet. Also at the event, from left, Ya’Ara Saks, Member of Parliament for York Centre; Jennifer McKelvie, Deputy Mayor of the City of Toronto; and Fort Monaco, chief of engineering and infrastructure at the TTC.

The Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) is working hard to make transit even more climate friendly. In November 2017, we adopted our Green Bus Technology Plan, a blueprint for the transition to a fully zero-emissions fleet by 2040 or sooner. Since then, we’ve continued to expand our fleet of battery-electric buses, and now boast one of the largest eBus fleets in North America.

And the TTC isn’t stopping there. Here are some additional green initiatives that we’ve announced recently:

New Hybrid-Electric Buses

In April, the first vehicles in a shipment of 336 additional hybrid-electric buses were delivered, with the remaining buses scheduled to be delivered by 2024. All of these vehicles will replace buses that have reached the end of their useful life.

Battery-electric buses are an important step towards reducing emissions in Toronto. With this procurement, one third of the TTC’s bus fleet will be made up of low- or zero-emissions buses by mid-2024.

This is the final shipment of hybrid-electric buses before the TTC transitions to a fully electric bus procurement strategy.

Funding for Zero-Emissions Buses

At the end of April, the federal government and the City of Toronto announced a joint investment of $700 million towards the electrification of the TTC’s bus fleet.

This funding will support the purchase of 340 zero-emission buses, 248 chargers and upgrades to supporting infrastructure in eight bus garages. 

bus charging at overhead charging pantograph
A TTC eBus being charged by a new overhead charging pantograph at the agency’s Birchmount Garage in Scarborough.

Proof of Concept eBus Charging Project

We’re not only working on expanding our fleet of eBuses, but we’re also working on being more effective and efficient with the electric vehicles that are currently in the TTC fleet.

The TTC and PowerON Energy Solutions recently unveiled 10 newly commissioned, eBus charging pantographs as part of a proof of concept at Birchmount Garage in Scarborough, expanding the TTC’s charging capacity.

The new pantographs will support overhead charging, delivering electricity from a centralized power source to chargers mounted above battery-electric buses. These chargers are among the first of their kind in North America and an innovative step for the TTC. Because they’re smaller than the previously existing chargers, the technology will save a great deal of space and ensure we are able to charge more eBuses within the confines of our existing garages.


At the TTC, we’re consistently looking for ways to reduce our carbon footprint. We’ve made a commitment to the City of Toronto and to the environment to consider climate resiliency in everything we do. By 2030, 50 percent of our fleet will be electric, and we are working towards 100 percent by 2040 or sooner. We’re working towards a greener future for our city, our customers and the world!