Eau Claire's new local art-wrapped hybrid buses are super fantastic

photos by Andrea Paulseth

They city of Eau Claire just got itself three brand new hybrid busses to replace a trio of aging busses, all of them 10 years old or older. Eau Claire Transit purchased the new ones at an 80% discount thanks to funding from the Federal Transit Administration. And! As if hybrid technology for public transportation at a deep discount weren't cool enough, there's more ...

As we've previously reported, these busses are currently in the process of getting¬† gussied up with exterior wraps designed by three art students from the UW-Eau Claire. The Hybrid Bus Design Project is organized by the University’s Art & Design Department.

Three lucky students were chosen to participate based on their outstanding portfolios and level of interest in the project. Each student came from a different area of the art department. Jenny Johns (Bachelor of Fine Arts in graphic design), Aly Wheeler (Bachelor of Arts in photography), and Luke Benson (Bachelor of Fine Arts in illustration) put their heads together with three Art & Design professors – Ned Gannon, Sooyum Im, and Jyl Kelley –¬†to come up with designs for our new buses.

Right now, our fine, local bus drivers are getting training with the new rigs (which are apparently much zippier than their all-diesel counterparts), and the bus pictured here is the only one with all of its artwork installed. To get a sneak peak at the other designs, check out the Hybrid Bus Design Project blog.

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