Published Thursday, November 19, 2020
Seven-year-old boy wins first
place in electric bus design
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff
Ian Knight, 7, from Cartago Province, is the winner of the drawing design contest that will be painted on the first public electric buses fleet donated by the German Cooperation Organization - GIZ.
The winning design created by the young boy shows the colors and shapes of the country's nature. "I drew little trees, flowers, a path to the future and a rainbow," Knight said. "Also trees that help purify the air and not pollute the planet."
According to Claus Kruse, representative of GIZ, through this contest it was possible to include boys and girls, their families and their schools in the electrification of public transport.
"For the German Cooperation it has been very gratifying to see the response that the drawing contest and how the participants have integrated art, the city, the environment, mobility in their works, so it has been tough choosing the winners," Kruse said.
More than 250 children participated in the contest to design the painting that will decorate the electric bus. Of these, 10 finalists were selected.
César Velázquez, 10, won second place. The boy made a design that shows the theme of renewable energy, where electric buses travel and people use this public form of transportation.
Third place went to Sara Méndez, 8, who drew symbols of the union between Costa Rica and Germany.
Not only will the winning children’s art be featured on the new buses, but they will be prized with a computer donated by the Electricity Institute and a printer donated by the EPSON company. It doesn’t end there. Their drawings will be painted on a mural at their schools as a donation from the Glidden company.
According to Claudia Dobles, the first lady and promoter of electric public transport in the country, the new generations will not drive gas vehicles and will use electric buses, with zero emissions, without muffles and pollutants. "In the designs that these boys and girls drew, that message is clear: these new generations will have spaces with cleaner air and a better quality of life."
A shipment of three electric buses donated by the German government arrived in September.
"The development of knowledge associated with electric buses in the public institutions involved and in the bus operating companies is key to the sustainability of the electrification of public transport in the long term," Kruse said. "From the German Cooperation, we have committed ourselves to develop this training plan to guarantee the necessary knowledge for a successful implementation of the electric bus pilot and its subsequent escalation."
In October GIZ and the BYD transport company developed the training for the maintenance, driving, recharging process, among others.
BYD is the transport company winner of the international tender developed by GIZ for the purchase of the three electric buses, recharging and training centers.
The electric buses should begin their rotations on the streets and were programmed to start in October, but according to the government, it is expected to start using the buses in a few weeks.
The first programed route between the cantons of San José, Desamparados and San Rafael in San José Province. The second route will be between San José Province and Tres Ríos Canton in Cartago Province. And a third route will be between the provinces of San José and Alajuela.
The National Decarbonization Plan goal is set for the year 2035, 30% of the public transport fleet must have zero emissions, Andrea Meza, Minister of the Environment said.
According to Meza, the pilot plant will also educate citizens of the positive impacts of decarbonizing, including how better air quality improves people's health.
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