New TriMet buses will continue to roll into service every year through 2019

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262 new buses planned under new contract

TriMet continues to work to make your ride more reliable with plans to put more buses on the road through 2019. The agency’s new bus purchase program has been extended meaning we plan to add new buses every year for five additional years.

On Wednesday, the TriMet Board approved a plan to purchase additional new buses beginning in 2015 and running through 2019.

By fiscal year 2016, the average age of the TriMet’s fleet will be reduced to the industry standard of eight years old. All of our new buses come standard with air conditioning, automatic stop announcements and security cameras; and it is anticipated that all older buses without these amenities will be retired by that date. All high-floor vehicles will be retired by 2017.

“New buses mean more reliable service riders can count on, a decrease in maintenance costs and fewer break downs,” said TriMet General Manager Neil McFarlane. “The unanimous vote affirms TriMet’s commitment to improving service for our customers.”

The buses will be built by Gillig at their facility in Haywood, CA. Gillig is currently manufacturing and delivering new buses as part of our existing bus purchase contract that extends through June 2015.

FY15-FY19 Preliminary bus purchase schedule

2015*

Initial Order

not less than:

2016

Order 2

up to:

2017

Order 3

up to:

2018

Order 4

up to:

2019

Order 5

up to:

Total

up to:

30’Diesel

22

18

40

40’Diesel

8

60
(CNG option)

60
(CNG option)

40

40

208

40’Hybrid

4

10

14

* The FY15 bus purchase is split between the current and newly approved contract.

The contract includes an option to buy up to 120 40-foot compressed natural gas (CNG) buses. The cleaner running CNG buses offer reduced emissions and the potential to save money in the long run. If the agency moves forward with the CNG project, the TriMet Board will be asked to activate the option for purchasing the CNG buses in the future.

Funding
Bus purchases under this new contract will be funded from a combination of federal and state grants, available operating resources and bond proceeds. The projected cost for the 34 buses slated for delivery in 2015 totals $17.2 million. The total estimated cost for the entire five-year purchase ranges from $123 million to $128 million, depending on whether the agency pursues the CNG bus technology or other green technologies.

Existing bus procurement contract
TriMet’s current bus procurement contract was awarded June 2011 for purchase of up to 211 buses, which are replacing some of our oldest and most troublesome 40’ buses. Prior to that contract, our bus purchase program had been delayed a few years due to the recession. However, in FY12 McFarlane accelerated the bus replacement schedule to address TriMet’s aging bus fleet that had become more expensive to maintain and less reliable. Some buses in the fleet are more than 18 years old.

FY12-FY15 bus purchase schedule

2012

Order 1 :

2013

Order 2:

2014

Order 3:

2015

Order 4:

Total:

40’Diesel

51

70

60

30

211

40’Hybrid

4

4

TriMet took delivery of 51 buses in 2012, including four hybrids under a separate contract. We are currently taking delivery of 70 buses as part of the FY13 bus purchase. As of September 20, 41 new buses have joined our fleet with 29 additional new buses to be added in the coming month and a half. Riders have begun to see the new buses, referred to and numbered the 3100 series, on various routes throughout the city.

Fiscal year 2014 will see an additional 60 buses, with 64 buses delivered in 2015 (split between the two contracts).