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CTA is apparently ordering more New Flyer artics.

King County Metro has been working with New Flyer and CTA so that CTA can purchase 100 New Flyers that Seattle (King County) changed its mind about. Based on King County's order, the low-floor artics will be a mix of diesel and diesel-electric engines. 67 Diesel and 33 diesel-electric hybrids. New Flyer will begin to deliver the buses late this year and delivery will be complete in 2013.

Now the question is: are these buses merely intended to replace the Novas which began service in 2000 and 2001 (12-year-useful life) or are these buses needed to provide additional bus service and bus shuttles when the Red Line shuts down next year?

I don't know when New Flyer or CTA will announce this, but the cost of assuming these buses from Seattle's contract will run between $70-80 million.

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CTA is apparently ordering more New Flyer artics.

King County Metro has been working with New Flyer and CTA so that CTA can purchase 100 New Flyers that Seattle (King County) changed its mind about. Based on King County's order, the low-floor artics will be a mix of diesel and diesel-electric engines. 67 Diesel and 33 diesel-electric hybrids. New Flyer will begin to deliver the buses late this year and delivery will be complete in 2013.

Now the question is: are these buses merely intended to replace the Novas which began service in 2000 and 2001 (12-year-useful life) or are these buses needed to provide additional bus service and bus shuttles when the Red Line shuts down next year?

I don't know when New Flyer or CTA will announce this, but the cost of assuming these buses from Seattle's contract will run between $70-80 million.

That or to replace the uses less NABI's that can now be scrapped. Things still aren't set in stone about the Red Line being shut down yet so I won't say yet. The real thing is what garage is geting what? North Park should be good with having 100 along with Kedzie having 57. maybe 77th and 103rd will get some of theie share as well as maybe another garage such as Chicago for the 66, 72 and its other heavy routes?

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CTA is apparently ordering more New Flyer artics.

King County Metro has been working with New Flyer and CTA so that CTA can purchase 100 New Flyers that Seattle (King County) changed its mind about. Based on King County's order, the low-floor artics will be a mix of diesel and diesel-electric engines. 67 Diesel and 33 diesel-electric hybrids. New Flyer will begin to deliver the buses late this year and delivery will be complete in 2013.

Now the question is: are these buses merely intended to replace the Novas which began service in 2000 and 2001 (12-year-useful life) or are these buses needed to provide additional bus service and bus shuttles when the Red Line shuts down next year?

I don't know when New Flyer or CTA will announce this, but the cost of assuming these buses from Seattle's contract will run between $70-80 million.

Do you have any source? If so, post a link.

The only thing this is consistent with is that

  • Durbin said that there were about $40 million in grants for buses.
  • The budget says some Novas will be replaced.
  • CTA isn't buying NABIs.
  • CTA dealt with Seattle before with regard to options for 4000-4149.
What's not happening (unless something really strange is):

  • CTA is not buying any diesels, just hybrids.
  • CTA is not replacing the NABIs, because they already did so with 4000-4207.
  • Unless, there is some plan with regard to the Red Line (and CTA has denied it on the CTA Tattler, and, BTW you keep bringing this up and then tell us believe it or not), CTA hasn't said it has the money to hire new drivers.
  • Also, CTA said it only had $40 million in grants, not $80.

So, again, I conclude that while there may be something to this, why don't you tell us your authority to leak? In fact, if you have a source, why are you asking us questions???????????

In fact, why don't you ask your contact about what happened to the contract New Flyer announced it had with CTA for 140 to 900 buses????

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That or to replace the uses less NABI's that can now be scrapped.

The NABIs have been gone for over three years. Whether it was originally the plan or not, the 208 DE60LFs currently in service were the NABI replacements.

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Now the question is: are these buses merely intended to replace the Novas which began service in 2000 and 2001 (12-year-useful life) or are these buses needed to provide additional bus service and bus shuttles when the Red Line shuts down next year?

Another obvious possible use for these which I should have included would be for the mis-named BRT plans CDOT has announced.

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Do you have any source? If so, post a link.

Nope, no linkable source that I can find - it doesn't appear CTA, Seattle or New Flyer has posted anything yet.

  • Unless, there is some plan with regard to the Red Line (and CTA has denied it on the CTA Tattler, and, BTW you keep bringing this up and then tell us believe it or not), CTA hasn't said it has the money to hire new drivers.

Don't know what you are talking about. I never brought up the discussion of the Red Line closure. After someone else posted it, I commented that I had heard the same thing. And I only made one post about it. Not sure how that counts as "keep bringing that up".

  • Also, CTA said it only had $40 million in grants, not $80.

Actually, I thought it was only $30 million that Durbin announced. Was there another $10 mill I missed?

In fact, why don't you ask your contact about what happened to the contract New Flyer announced it had with CTA for 140 to 900 buses????

Nice unnoted post edit ;-) but I think that old New Flyer announcement is a topic you have covered pretty well - for years. (BTW, When you change your original post, isn't it good form to note that?)

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Don't know what you are talking about. I never brought up the discussion of the Red Line closure. After someone else posted it, I commented that I had heard the same thing. And I only made one post about it. Not sure how that counts as "keep bringing that up".

I had checked your profile, but I do see that mayfield was #1.

However, I suppose you can search the web for Durbin, and actually say what your source is.

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What's not happening (unless something really strange is):

  • CTA is not buying any diesels, just hybrids.

I'm confused by the double-negative. Are you saying CTA is NOT going to buy any diesels, that they will only buy hybrids?

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I'm confused by the double-negative. Are you saying CTA is NOT going to buy any diesels, that they will only buy hybrids?

No double negative there. So, yes, that's what I am saying.

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What's not happening (unless something really strange is):

  • CTA is not buying any diesels, just hybrids.
  • CTA is not replacing the NABIs, because they already did so with 4000-4207.
  • Unless, there is some plan with regard to the Red Line (and CTA has denied it on the CTA Tattler, and, BTW you keep bringing this up and then tell us believe it or not), CTA hasn't said it has the money to hire new drivers.

I haven't seen a statement by CTA that they have the money to hire new drivers, but Westside Tech is holding a job fair with CTA to recruit new part-time bus operators (supposed to be in the next two weeks). I haven't seen an official link to that effect, but I have no reason to disbelieve it.

However, there was no information as to what purpose these part-time operators would serve. Seems a little early to be recruiting for faux-BRT or Red Line service replacement. Maybe it is just a seasonal summer driver recruitment? I don't know.

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I haven't seen a statement by CTA that they have the money to hire new drivers, but Westside Tech is holding a job fair with CTA to recruit new part-time bus operators (supposed to be in the next two weeks). I haven't seen an official link to that effect, but I have no reason to disbelieve it.

However, there was no information as to what purpose these part-time operators would serve. Seems a little early to be recruiting for faux-BRT or Red Line service replacement. Maybe it is just a seasonal summer driver recruitment? I don't know.

The question is whether the attrition is sufficient that those who were laid off in 2010 were given their recall rights, so any subsequent attrition would require new hires to maintain current service levels.

Maybe what I should have said is that there is no indication that CTA can afford to increase service levels to the extent of supporting an addition to its payroll budget.

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I haven't heard or read anything about this yet, so it's news to me. I wouldn't put it 100% out the window, as it could be a deal in the works. A few questions about this are...

-Are these 40' or 60' Artics, or a mix of both?

-Will they be standard DLF style or DLFR style?

-Might these be the BRT Buses?

And of course the other questions already asked... will these start retirement of some of the NOVA LFS? The easiest for me to answer is are these replacing the NABI 60-LFW? No, that was done partially with 4150-4207. 4000-4149 were meant as a fleet expansion of Artics at the time, they just now cover the hole the NABI's left. We have 208 Artics, so we're only short 17 from the 225 NABI's, which is probably negligible.

As far as starting 4208 on up... no. I think these units will start with 4300(60' Buses) or 3000(40' Buses)*

*=Numbers are estimated... actual numbers may differ...

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It's true. And, yes, Busjack, I have a link (Word Doc, see item A-3).

I'll add that Hilkevitch and Schwartz from the Tribune tweeted this information no more than a half hour ago.

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As far as starting 4208 on up... no. I think these units will start with 4300(60' Buses) or 3000(40' Buses)*

*=Numbers are estimated... actual numbers may differ...

These will be all 60' artics. And since these will likely be LFRs instead of the LFs, the numbering will likely start at #4300 for the hybrids but a completely different numbering series (probably in the 7800s) for the diesels.

And King County Metro changed its mind about the artics in part because they are recently in litigation with New Flyer (which may still be ongoing). As such, King County Metro may change to a different manufacturer for future artics.

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Who else manufactures articulated transit buses in the U.S. [besides Nova, New Flyer, and NABI?]

Also, does anyone have an idea what type of seats and seating layout CTA will use on these buses?

Gene King

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Who else manufactures articulated transit buses in the U.S. [besides Nova, New Flyer, and NABI?]

Also, does anyone have an idea what type of seats and seating layout CTA will use on these buses?

Gene King

Van Hool also I believe still manufactuers artics, they have a fleet serving Oakland, CA AC Transit.

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Van Hool also I believe still manufactuers artics, they have a fleet serving Oakland, CA AC Transit.

That's correct, but there may be a question whether it meets Buy America Act requirements.

One certainly can't figure out Bay Area politics, but Googling yielded a story that indicated problems with the Van Hool relationship in this regard. Also, another story was entitled "The Buses from Hell." A later article from the latter source implied accounting fraud to get around the Buy America Act, and AC now buys Gillig, from a very local source.

The Buses from Hell article also states that the Van Hools did not undergo Altoona testing, which is a federal requirement, as well as part of the Standard Bus Procurement Guidelines. We know that the NABIs went through Altoona testing, but apparently ingloriously.

At least CTA would know what it was getting from New Flyer.

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Saw mention of this on ABC7 News. All they said was that CTA was ordering up to 100 articulateds "to start replacing and retiring some of its older bus models" which we know are the Novas since the oldest 1000s are only half into their FTA recommended useful lives. I would caution that up to 100 does not mean the final count will be 100 at the end of delivery. As for where they might end up, 74th wouldn't be a contender since we discussed the maintenance lifts there can't accommodate 60 ft buses. Blame that on the old MAN artics being the dominate articulated bus in Chicago at the time 74th was being built and the folks in charge of garage design not doing their research to find that artics weren't limited to 55 ft even then. As pointed out, Kedzie should be fine since what heavier routes it operates runs gets the use of those artics already assigned. NP definitely should be fine with just over 100 artics. The misnamed downtown BRT is a stretch since the proposals concentrate more on designated bus lanes for all the routes in that corridor and those routes mainly do fine with 40 ft buses with the heavier routes being 20 and 60. The 20 might be good, but the 60 would have been seeing artics already after it switched back to Kedzie. I would also understand 66 and 72 at Chicago as well. Maybe 77 at FG would see finally see needed relief as some called for on here. I could see 103rd for the 6 and to shore up 14 BRT. Once the decision is made on whether it will be Western or Ashland for BRT, I'm not so sure about artics there because of the above stated issue with 74th's maintenance lifts. You wouldn't be able to put artics there unless the BRT service is separate from local service on Ashland or Western and therefore can be assigned at different garages than the current 9 and 49, or either of those routes is fully assigned elsewhere. That option of reassigning those routes for BRT is not as simple as some on here make it out to be after the 74th repair lift issue was raised because each of those routes use 20-30 buses in their busiest times. Also 77th could use artics for heavy routes like the 3 and 4 as it did when the NABIs were still around. Outside any of those, I don't see CTA being able to go further without wasting passenger space.

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Saw mention of this on ABC7 News. All they said was that CTA was ordering up to 100 articulateds "to start replacing and retiring some of its older bus models" which we know are the Novas since the oldest 1000s are only half into their FTA recommended useful lives. I would caution that up to 100 does not mean the final count will be 100 at the end of delivery. As for where they might end up, 74th wouldn't be a contender since we discussed the maintenance lifts there can't accommodate 60 ft buses. Blame that on the old MAN artics being the dominate articulated bus in Chicago at the time 74th was being built and the folks in charge of garage design not doing their research to find that artics weren't limited to 55 ft even then. As pointed out, Kedzie should be fine since what heavier routes it operates runs gets the use of those artics already assigned. NP definitely should be fine with just over 100 artics. The misnamed downtown BRT is a stretch since the proposals concentrate more on designated bus lanes for all the routes in that corridor and those routes mainly do fine with 40 ft buses with the heavier routes being 20 and 60. The 20 might be good, but the 60 would have been seeing artics already after it switched back to Kedzie. I would also understand 66 and 72 at Chicago as well. Maybe 77 at FG would see finally see needed relief as some called for on here. I could see 103rd for the 6 and to shore up 14 BRT. Once the decision is made on whether it will be Western or Ashland for BRT, I'm not so sure about artics there because of the above stated issue with 74th's maintenance lifts. You wouldn't be able to put artics there unless the BRT service is separate from local service on Ashland or Western and therefore can be assigned at different garages than the current 9 and 49, or either of those routes is fully assigned elsewhere. That option of reassigning those routes for BRT is not as simple as some on here make it out to be after the 74th repair lift issue was raised because each of those routes use 20-30 buses in their busiest times. Also 77th could use artics for heavy routes like the 3 and 4 as it did when the NABIs were still around. Outside any of those, I don't see CTA being able to go further without wasting passenger space.

For 77th Garage, don't forget about #79.

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I could imagine a scenario where the.33 hybrids could go to NP, with NPs lowest numbered artics going to 103rd. The diesel artics would then possibly go to 77th. This current mayoral regime has been less than forthcoming about everything, so it remains to be seen what the city and CTA will do concerning gthe.south side Red Line. Since something must be done, I don't forsee an immediate retiring of.any Novas, save for the ones in an absolute deplorable condition until after the south side Red is repaired. 77th will certainty have the room after scrapping the 7500s. And is in a prime position to take over the 9 or 49 from 74th for any so called BRT service along Ashland or Western should that ever come to fruition. When the Novas do begin retirement, 77th has the oldest ones anyway. The only way I see Chicago Ave garage getting any artics is if.they get the last of the hybrids or hand me downs fron NP or 103rd. Yet we are still a ways off and.CTA has been known to surprise us, so we will wait amd see.

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does anyone have an idea what type of seats and seating layout CTA will use on these buses?

Gene King

I imagine the seating layout will be longitudinal (or "bowling-alley" style, as someone put it) just like on 1930-2029 and on some buses from North park.

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I imagine the seating layout will be longitudinal (or "bowling-alley" style, as someone put it) just like on 1930-2029 and on some buses from North park.

Your probably right, I think all future bus/rail purchases will be like this from now on. Probably what will end up happening is 77th will get 50-60 artics and Kedzie, NP and 103rd will each get what's left. If they retire on a 2 to 3 ratio, 77th could easily retire 90 #6400's. (but not until after the Dan Ryan gets fixed) If they got 100 artic buses with the 30 that's already coming they could retire as many as 195 #6400's or a little over a third of the #6400's. Sounds like the buses are mainly being purchased to replace the fleet and not for BRT, but it would probably be a good idea to lay the infrastructure for the #49 and #9 projects when they get off the ground level. This way the buses are there for them to use.

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Just to throw some fire on this, could it be possibie that this order may be a launch of the XD60s A.K.A 60 foot Xcelsior models?

*New Flyer is running around with a CNG version presently in Washington D.C

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