HIGH POINT, N.C. — Kansas City (Kan.) Public Schools has purchased 47 Thomas Built HDX rear-engine buses powered by compressed natural gas (CNG).
The purchase of the buses, refueling infrastructure and equipment was made possible with a $4 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy through the Kansas City Regional Clean Cities Coalition and matching funds from the school district.
The buses were purchased from Midwest Bus Sales, the Thomas Built dealer for Kansas, Oklahoma, western Missouri and Illinois.
Midwest delivered one pilot model of the bus on Sept. 1. By late November, the district had five buses for training.
The rest of the buses were scheduled to be delivered before the end of the year, and they will be put into service when the infrastructure is completed in early 2011. The infrastructure comprises 35 time-fill dispensers with dual hoses, allowing each station to fuel two buses at a time.
Kansas City Public Schools' director of transportation, George Taylor, said he hopes to incorporate more CNG-powered buses into his fleet in the future. "I want other school districts to see the advantages of CNG buses. My dream is for the district’s fleet of large buses to be 100 percent CNG," he said.