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  •  There are reasosn, although not all are good ones (1+ / 0-)
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    the overhead wires do fix the route, it's expensive to change the route. Sometimes this is needed on a temporary basis, say when construction or repair work closes the normal route.  Buses that had batteries as well, or ran dual mode diesel/wired electric, can get around this.

    The wires are considered unsightly, and tend to create a lot of public opposition. This is particularly true in neighborhoods that have increased taxes/bills to pay for undergrounding the utility wiring.

    One other thing is that trolley-buses can't pass each other,  unless bypasses are included. I remember than some bus stops one wide streets did have that, the bus stop had a short section of sidetrack wires that buses stopping there would use, while other buses would continue on by on the main wires. This was important as there were schedule synchronization stops where a bus would wait for some minutes if it were ahead a schedule.

    Batteries plus overhead wires would allow buses to charge while on the wires, and go wireless for the outlying portions of route. It might be practical to design the pickups so that if they came off the wires they'd automatically stow themselves, the driver could reconnect at the next stop rather than being stuck in the middle of the street.

    The cost of powering an electric per mile looks to be appreciably lower than for diesel or gasoline powered buses. The electric buses seem to cost about twice as much as the standard buses, but to have lower operational costs and last much longer.

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