The Downtown Stockton Alliance has switched to an all-electric fleet of maintenance vehicles. A nearly $100,000 grant from the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District allowed the switch to the new Polaris Ranger buggies, which may be small, but are capable of hauling up to 1,700 pounds in cargo. They're even four-wheel drive.
Even the drivers are still sometimes surprised when they fire up their buggies and are met with virtual silence.
"This is such a step up," worker Brandon Trahan said as he and his partner pressure-washed graffiti off a San Joaquin Street structure.
It'll be quieter, and it should be cheaper. Last year the alliance burned through $17,000 in gas for its John Deere vehicles. Maintenance costs were also increasing as those vehicles got older.
Now some of that gas money can be spent on other things, Trahan said.
"It allows us to do more for the community," he said.