Melbourne Bus Franchise delivers jobs boost

The new Metropolitan Bus Franchise is creating more than 60 new jobs in Melbourne’s south-east while delivering zero and low-emission buses.

Major bus body builder, Volgren, will create 50 new jobs – including 20 by Christmas – and 16 traineeships at its South Dandenong facility as it builds zero and low-emission buses for the new franchise operator Kinetic.

Volgren builds electric buses in Victoria using approximately 100 Australian suppliers, with almost 90 per cent local production for the body build and will have the first electric buses for the franchise on the production line in January.

For each new bus built, an estimated 1.5 employees are retained at Volgren and 3.5 employees retained in Victoria’s supply chain.

The new bus franchise, Kinetic, will replace 341 of the current fleet’s 537 buses with zero or low emission vehicles over 9.5 years from February next year.

Kinetic will introduce 36 fully electric buses to the network by mid-2025, including five by June next year, jump starting the Victorian Government’s pledge for all new public transport buses to be zero-emission from 2025.

Victoria’s first permanent electric bus, built by Volgren, recently hit the network and is being operated by Ventura across six routes from its Ivanhoe bus depot, with destinations including the Gowrie Railway Station, Northland Shopping Centre, and La Trobe University.