NFTA breaks ground, looks forward to natural gas fleet

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Shovels broke earth on Monday, marking the start of a $6 million project to convert a bus fleet from natural to diesel gas.

Construction will begin on a new compressed natural gas fueling station to help buses run cleaner and in a more cost effective manner.

“It depends on fuel prices, but the expected payoff over 12 to 15 years, we’re looking to save $26 million,” Kimberley Minkel said. “We expect to break even on the capital purchase with this in three to four years.”

The fueling station should be built before the end of 2015, and the first buses running on natural gas should be on the road by early 2016. The drivers of the buses, however, say they’re hoping the savings lead to progress in an ongoing battle.

NFTA union workers picketed the Monday press conference, saying they haven’t had a contract in six years, and haven’t had a raise in seven years. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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