Lynnwell Associates Powers the Boston Public School System’s Inaugural Fleet of Electrical-Powered Buses (NECA Spotlight)

NECA Boston joins in celebrating the work of Contractor Lynnwell & Associates & International & Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 103 (IBEW 103) in helping to design & install the Electric Vehicle infrastructure for Boston Public Schools.

Starting Monday morning, February 27, Boston’s first 20 electricity-powered school buses will take to the streets, carrying an estimated 2,500 students to and from 42 schools daily. The deployment, supported by the installation of the required EV charger infrastructure, marks the first stage of an ambitious pilot program that sets the stage for a complete electrification of Boston Public School’s 700-vehicle fleet by 2030.

“This will be the biggest charger facility for school buses in the Northeast,” says Mike Dutton, General Forman for Lynnwell Associates, the NECA Boston-member electrical firm tasked with installing the project’s electrical infrastructure. The company was chosen for the job by Voltrek, the prime contractor that designed and supplied the EV system and is managing the project for the City of Boston. “We were approached by Voltrek President Kathleen Conners last fall,” explains Lynnwell President Larry Mahoney. “We also do electrical maintenance for the Boston school system, so there was a connection there.”

Once hired, Lynnwell’s involvement encompassed the installation of a 4000-amp switchboard and transformer, along with 20 30kw DC charges that can power 20 buses at a time. “The installation has the infrastructure for an additional 100 charges when the city decides to purchase more buses,” Dutton said, adding that there is more to the system than simply turning the power on. “These chargers all communicate with the school department so they can tell if the driver isn’t plugged in; also, they can stagger the charging time for the buses, so the load is kept in check.”

Mahoney had much praise for IBEW Local 103 for supplying skilled workers that got the job done.

The EV/green energy transformation of the Boston Public School transportation system is off to a strong start.

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