True, you need to start somewhere...but only if you think it makes sense in the long run...I am still sceptical...I would raher invest in public transportatation than in EV cars...and encourage people to walk/bike and build the cities in a such a way to support the car-light vision
??? This (pedestrian crossings activated on demand, USUALLY but not always synchronized with the other signals) has been VERY common throughout USA for decades! Pedestrian crossings aren't the problem in large cities; street crossings are. Don't you have any of those in Vancouver?
Speaking of Vancouver, they have a realliy innovative traffic stoplight system there. On a busy street the traffic lights stay green until a pedestrian pushes the the button to cross the street. This works well and I wish it woud be adopted in the USA.
The Chinese are experimenting with a Capabus, which uses ultracapacitors instead of batteries. These give a few kilometers of range. At each bus stop, the bus quickly recharges the ultracaps (faster than a battery recharge) using overhead contacts. This way you don't have to cart heavy batteries around all day.
AC Transit in Oakland/Berkeley/etc has some fuel cell buses, which work very well. They use solar or bio-gas to make the hydrogen.
San Francisco still has plenty of trolley buses, which have overhead wires. Some of these overhead wires are shared with streetcars.
This is the 21st Century. Nobody should have to smell diesel exhaust any more.
The price reduction indeed makes the ROI and total cost of ownership closer to combustion engine cars & hybrids, but whether it is compelling enough depends on so many other factors. How long will the tax break continue? Better buy one before it expires. Do you have access to public or employer-provided free charging stations? That certainly tips the equation very favorably toward buying an EV now, but how long will it be before free charging for early adopters goes away?
Besides the costs, there are the inconvenience factors -- range, accessibility of charging stations (free or otherwise) and time to charge.
Among all the plug-in EVs, I would find the Tesla Model S very compelling -- if only they could find a way to make a profit on it at half the price!
I live in Vancouver, Canada where buses don't run that long shifts...and try to avoid using busses when in USA...I am still not clear what is the problem with swapping batteries, 6 hours not enough to do it at night? what is the problem in standarizing this operation and have all busses look be teh same?
Never been in a big American city? Buses usually run 18 or more hours a day. Diesel or CNG buses can be refueled with a quick depot stop. The battery packs needed to support operation for even a full shift could easily weight at least a ton, not real easy to swap, and they would need several sets for EACH vehicle, since they all run the same shifts. Batteries that large and with that much capacity would not recharge very quickly, even with "fast-charging" techniques.