LYNX is working on multiple projects that will result in the acquisition of vehicles with battery electric propulsion. These vehicles will enable LYNX to provide sustainable and environmentally friendly transportation services in support of initiatives by our funding partners.
The initial deployment will be on the LYMMO bus routes in downtown Orlando, starting with the first bus in late spring 2020. Additional battery electric buses will be added to the LYMMO fleet bringing the LYMMO fleet to 50% battery electric buses and 50% Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) fuel by the end of calendar year 2020.
This initial deployment is in support of the City of Orlando 2018 Community Action Plan, a 5 year roadmap approved by the Orlando City Council, which includes a commitment to transition the LYMMO service to an all-electric, zero-emissions fleet. It will provide experience in operating battery electric buses and the associated charging equipment and will allow LYNX to determine whether to consider deployment of additional battery electric buses into the rest of the fixed route fleet.
LYNX is working with the Orlando Utilities Commission (OUC) during this deployment, with OUC providing expertise in the charging equipment and battery components of the buses. LYNX envisions continuing expansion of the electrification of up to half of the fixed route fleet with the remainder operating on CNG.
Automated Driving Systems
Automated Driving Systems (ADS) provide levels of vehicle automation from assistance with basic driving functions, such as cruise control, to fully automated driverless vehicles.
LYNX is coordinating with our local community partners as a member of the Central Florida Automated Vehicle Partnership (http://centralfloridaavpg.com/). In 2012, the Florida Automated Vehicles (FAV) program was established to lead the state in developing best safety practices and promote awareness for AVs and relevant technology. The Central Florida AV Partnership includes regional agencies and entities that have demonstrated leadership and significant contributions towards mobility challenges.
LYNX is currently working with the City of Orlando and MetroPlan Orlando to develop a Concept of Operations for how ADS could be deployed to enhance LYNX fixed route service. This plan will be completed by the end of 2020 and will explore systems that assist bus drivers in providing safe and efficient service. It will also explore the longer term potential for the introduction of higher levels of automation into the fleet, including the readiness of the industry to deploy these systems in a manner that meets our passenger’s needs.