ELECTRIC bus routes will be introduced across the city for the first time since the 1960s next week as two commercial vehicles prepare to make the journey across Glasgow.

First Glasgow will roll out the two buses as part of a statement of intent for the city’s transport, working towards the bold target of net-zero emissions by 2030.

The pair were unveiled at George Square yesterday before going on a tour of the city.

Lucky pupils from St Joseph’s Primary School were among the first to hop on board when one stopped at the school gates, before heading to the Riverside Museum, where it will be on display all weekend.

The two electric vehicles will be put to work from Monday, as they operate the M3 route, which connects communities in Milton and Springburn with Stobhill Hospital and the city centre.

The launch of these vehicles means the city has now come full circle back to fully electric transport on commercial routes for the first time since the electric trolley buses were decommissioned by the Glasgow Corporation in May 1967.

Councillor Anna Richardson, city convener for sustainability and carbon reduction, said: “I’m delighted that Glasgow will soon see these fully electric buses on commercial routes within our city, further incentivising bus travel as a convenient and sustainable alternative to the car.

“It’s a testament to First’s commitment to improving air quality, and follows on from their recent investment in brand new low-emission buses as well as retrofitting a significant number of their existing fleet to Low Emission Zone (LEZ) emission standard.”

The electric buses are being fully funded as part of SP Energy Networks’s £20 million Green Economy Fund, which supports Glasgow’s mission to become the UK’s first net-zero emissions city by 2030.

The new buses have the latest mirrorless smartvision technology, which removes the need for wing mirrors, helps reduce blind spots for drivers and even helps to reduce the effects of bad weather on their vision via the state-of-the-art CCTV system.

The new vehicles will also have USB charging points, on-board audio-visual next-stop announcements and free Wi-Fi to provide a better customer experience.

As part of the SP Energy Networks funding deal, First Glasgow will also introduce 22 electric vehicle charging points in its Glasgow Caledonia Depot, which will ultimately allow more electric buses to be introduced by First Glasgow into Glasgow’s transport network in the future.

Andrew Jarvis, managing director for First Glasgow, said: “We are delighted to launch the city’s first conversion of a commercial bus service to a fully electric operation.

“As a business, one of our main goals is to make buses part of the solution when it comes to improving air quality in the city.

“We plan to make great strides to improve the city’s air quality and making Glasgow a cleaner and greener place to live and work.”