Although a public bus service to Belconnen commenced in 1967, it was not until 1979 that a depot was available in the new town. Problems with the design of the depot followed by budgetary restraints caused delays to the start of construction.

Bus 708 departs Belconnen Depot

Belconnen Depot opened on 3 September 1979. Designed to accommodate, under cover, 250 buses, when opened it was the largest depot in Canberra and among the largest in Australia. Associated with the depot is the Belconnen workshop, a facility opened in October 1978 although it did not perform its complete role until the depot opened. Belconnen workshop has a dual role, providing day-to-day maintenance of buses operating out of Belconnen Depot and functioning as the major overhaul facility for the entire fleet.

With the opening of this workshop, ACTION extended its ‘repair by replacement’ program. When a major component requires repair or replacement it is removed from the bus at the ‘home’ depot workshop and immediately replaced at that workshop with a new or reconditioned component enabling the bus to return to service. The Belconnen workshop provides fully reconditioned engines, gearboxes and other parts to both depot workshops.

One of the features of the building is the largest underground workshop in Australia. Leighton Project/Construction Management Division were the construction managers for Belconnen Depot and Workshop.

Buses operating out of Belconnen Depot are:
– Renault PR100.2
– Renault PR100.3
– Irisbus Agora Line
– MAN A69 18.320/18.310 (Diesel)
– Scania K320UB 6×2*4
– Scania K360UA 6×2/2
– Scania K320UB 4×2

You can find a full listing of these vehicles at our Wiki.

Bus access to the Depot is from Cohen Street. Staff carpark entrance is from Josephson Street.

Belconnen Depot does not feature a CNG refueling facility, which means that all buses that run on CNG are based at the Tuggeranong Depot, although CNG buses may be sent to Belconnen Workshops for repairs.

Other facilities include a bus wash, diesel and AdBlue refueling, staff mess room and amenities, and the Belconnen field supervisor office.

Depot Tours have been held occasionally, with the last being held in 2006. However due to the safety issues associated with the general public being allowed inside such a facility, any tours of an operational area such as the sheds or workshops will see attendees required to stay inside a tour vehicle (bus) at all times.

This page contains a section authored by Ian Cooper and a section authored by ACT Bus.
Article update 1 January 2020.

Categories: Infrastructure