Eco-Friendly Fleet

We're Driving Toward a Cleaner Tomorrow​

Many years ago MetroLINK made a commitment to be a sustainable leader in the Quad Cities. We understand that the decisions we make and the way we operate will impact the environment for years to come. In 2002, we began transitioning our fixed-route fleet from diesel to compressed natural gas (CNG). In 2018, we welcomed our first three (3) battery electric buses to our fleet, and expanded the battery electric bus program to eight (8) in 2019. In 2022, the battery electric bus fleet grew to 17. Today we have an entire eco-friendly fleet, with 70% of buses running on compressed natural gas (CNG) and 30% running on battery electric (note, final diesels to be decommissioned by end of 2022).

What's Next?

In Spring 2022, MetroLINK was awarded Illinois State Capital Assistance to renovate Centre Station (which will include electrical upgrades) and deploy on-street charging infrastructure at three downtown passenger terminals (East Pointe, Centre Station, and District Station), as well as MetroLINK's Operations and Maintenance Center. 

An additional award as part of a Congressionally Directed Spending Request via U.S. Senator Durbin and the Illinois DOT will supplement any funds necessary for on-street and depot charger upgrades.

The combination of the aforementioned awards will provide sufficient infrastructure to deploy the fifteen (15) battery electric buses being requested as part of the FTA FY2022 discretionary funding program. 

In addition, MetroLINK plans to install a total of 50 Level 3 automobile EV chargers in the downtown areas of East Moline, Moline, and Rock Island, allowing users to charge 250-500 miles of range with a charge time of just 1-2 hours. This economic development initiative will generate economic activity throughout the downtowns. 

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Eco-Friendly Ad 1
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Learn more about the Proterra Battery Electric Buses at


Check out the next advancement in environmentally friendly technology and the best ride in town today! Metro YouTube!

What’s new on the Proterra battery-electric bus fleet:

  • Zero. That’s zero emissions.

  • Quietest ride on the market

  • Quantum wheelchair securement system

  • State of the art camera system with 4K technology and 360 degree camera

  • Infotainment (video display)

How Battery Electric Buses Work


Powered by state-of-the-art batteries under the bus floor, our electric buses are expected to travel for approximately 7-10 hours before they need recharging. Actual range of the buses is dependent on factors such as weather conditions, grade changes on the route, and passenger load. The buses can fully recharge at Metro's Operations and Maintenance Center in 2-4 hours. 


The carbon composite body of the buses minimizes repairs and maximizes life. Steel-body buses often experience corrosion throughout their average 12-year lifespan. However, the carbon composite body of the electric bus is expected to stay in continuous service for years longer. The electric drivetrain was also designed with 30% fewer parts, which  means fewer maintenance repairs and replacements over the lifetime of the bus. 


The electric buses are exceptionally quiet and create virtually no noise when idling. In motion, they're whisper quiet at 57 dB and operate below a normal conversation level. 


The electric buses produce zero tailpipe emissions. The table below shows estimated lifetime emissions reductions that are expected by transitioning a diesel bus to all electric. Metro also has a unique charging opportunity with its recently-constructed Operations and Maintenance Center (OMC). The OMC has a rooftop solar array with over 1,300 photovoltaic panels, which will further offset energy costs and fossil fuel reductions of the electric buses.

Annual Tailpipe Emissions Comparison (Electric vs. Diesel)

Source: Proterra, GREET Model Fleet Footprint Calculator, & EPA Motor Vehicle Emission Simulator

Emissions Type

Proterra Electric Bus

Standard Diesel Bus

Greenhouse Gases (lbs)



Carbon Dioxide (lbs)



Methane (lbs)



Carbon Monoxide (lbs)



Nitrogen Oxide (lbs)



Hydrocarbon (lbs)



Particulate Matter (lbs)



Black Carbon (lbs)



Battery Electric Bus Frequently Asked Questions

What route (or routes) do the electric buses operate on? 

The current seventeen (17) buses will operate on various routes throughout the system.

How do the electric buses change my ride? 

The buses are similar in size, shape, and ride compared to Metro's other compressed natural gas and diesel buses. Riders may notice that the buses are quieter, but otherwise no differences should be expected from a rider's perspective. 

How did Metro fund the electric buses? 

The three (3) initial buses were paid for primarily by a combination of Federal Transit Administration Section 5308 (Clean Fuels) and 5339 (Buses and Bus Facilities) funding, in addition to matching funds from the State of Illinois and MetroLINK. The five (5) buses delivered in Spring 2019 were paid for with Federal Transit Administration Section 5307 and 5339 (Buses and Bus Facilities) funding, in addition to matching funds from the State of Illinois. The nine (9) 2022 buses were paid for with a combination of EPA Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA) funds and Section 5339 (Bus and Bus Facilities) funds, in addition to Illinois Capital Assistance funding.

Read all about it!

See what the local media has to say.

QC Online

Media Links

Press release 2019
Press release 2018
Media B Roll
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