Forbes has an extensive report on the initiative by the London and Valletta-based architecture and design practice Mizzi Studio for a modern return of the traditional Maltese buses as an all-electric fleet.
Jonathan Mizzi from Mizzi Studio set his multidisciplinary team the challenge to define the strongest common features of the traditional Maltese bus, including the oversized chrome grill, round hooded headlights and a visor overhanging the windscreen.
The aim is for a fully electric, emission-free fleet that is in line with the EU’s long-term strategy for a climate-neutral future. So, the studio’s next challenge was to transpose the design elements onto a modern-day chassis.
Badges of a Maltese cross and horseshoe, traditionally fixed to the buses to ward off evil spirits, also feature on the new design.
Mizzi told Forbes it as an opportunity to design a bus for the future with zero emissions.
Malta’s relative small size means the fleet can operate from a central depot. The island also has the potential to harness solar power in the future.
He expressed the hope that the new designs for an electric bus fleet will drum up public support and help to drive the nation towards this goal.
A free public exhibition, Malta Bus Reborn, will be held July – September 2019 in Valletta.
The exhibition will show in detail the steps in Mizzi Studio’s design process over a 7-year period, including the research and development that has informed the vehicle’s technical and aesthetic features.
Highlights of the exhibition will include a 1:6 scale model of the proposed bus, and a five-minute film produced by Stargate Studios, picturing the new bus on routes through some of the islands’ most picturesque locations.