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Busjack

Pace Construction

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Whatever the time frame is on the NW garage, I'm suspecting 2015. They could probably go with a dual order of CNG's one for South and one for NW. Sounds like they may be completed together. One might wonder how many new diesels they would want to put into a future CNG garage? But NW has alot of buses to replace.

The 2014 budget said "out year" (page 41). $15 million is budgeted for 2015 and $45 million for 2016 (page 44).

There are the preexisting questions about why Pace asked for prices for 250 CNG buses, but hasn't posted the award even for the 91 for South.

I'm sure that the motivations for a new NW garage are that it is about 1/4 of the necessary size and old (1961), while the other division garages (except Heritage) were replaced in the late 1980s to mid 1990s.

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The 2014 budget said "out year" (page 41). $15 million is budgeted for 2015 and $45 million for 2016 (page 44).

There are the preexisting questions about why Pace asked for prices for 250 CNG buses, but hasn't posted the award even for the 91 for South.

I'm sure that the motivations for a new NW garage are that it is about 1/4 of the necessary size and old (1961), while the other division garages (except Heritage) were replaced in the late 1980s to mid 1990s.

What really has me wondering is this new order of Eldorados that came in. I mean this last Eldo order was lucky if it was 7-8 buses. I wonder if it's plausable to suggest they put a stop to that order and possibly want to replace those with CNG's. Just seems weird to me they received 8 buses and stop. But that opens up a new can of worms as they would have to send NABI's to NW to replace the diesels until 2016, if that is indeed the completion date of NW and they can't go CNG there just yet. But they could always send the west Eldos to NW for a year and just send some Orions to West until 2016 but that would only be half of what NW needs. But maybe that would possibly get them to 2016. If they went to South with CNG's this year or next they could actually replace the ex NW Orions at West with the South NABI's. This way they could actually replace 50 something Orions this year.

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,,,But that opens up a new can of worms as they would have to send NABI's to NW to replace the diesels until 2016, if that is indeed the completion date of NW and they can't go CNG there just yet. ...

I think that one thing we can bet on, based on deliveries since about 2003, is one certainly can't predict More Bus Moves 3 years in advance.

Especially with Pace, which while posting base orders on the Contract Awards page, has had a history of not posting how many buses were actually ordered.

I only took your prior comment to be speculation whether Pace, in designing a garage from a clean sheet, would decide to design a CNG garage.

However, when you talk about within the next 3 years, there is the issue discussed earlier that due to consolidating series, pretty much everything at NW (other than 6156-6161 and 2767-2792) are slated to be replaced before any NABI.

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That's why they would move around the NABI's. Someone is going to end up with the south NABI's. This way maybe they can avoid NABI's being trained at new garages for a little while.

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I just can't see NABI's being sent to NW, I think the Orions there will last another two years, then will be wiped out completely when NW gets its new garage and the Milwaukee ART begins. I could see some of the South NABI's being sent to West to retire the 18 Orions there, and the rest to retire the ones at SW...

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The IDOT program includes "Pace CNG Buses. Purchase of 91 40’ CNG Buses. Estimated Cost: $49 million from State funds including Illinois Jobs Now!" (page 6). Apparently needs to be appropriated by the legislature, though.

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Just my opinion, NW will completely absorb 600,606,610 (assuming river's suburban Eldo's) eliminating need of Pace River and with BOS eventually on I-90, more trips will be added = more buses.. Then, 6400's will make their way in fizzing out Orions.. Any NABI's from South will find way to possibly North Shore (replacing Orions) and North.

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Just my opinion, NW will completely absorb 600,606,610 (assuming river's suburban Eldo's) eliminating need of Pace River and with BOS eventually on I-90, more trips will be added = more buses......

While there probably will be fewer mixed routes, the issue is that as the I-90 project gets going, there are supposed to be 608 trips to Randall Road, either to Rosemont or NWTC. The deadhead to River is certainly less from Randall, and probably also from Prairie Stone. Just like SW didn't get any of 755/855 (even though it did split some of 835 with Heritage), I don't think that the Express buses will be eliminated from River.

There also seems to be the issue that when Pace splits a route between garages, the different union locals impedes combining operations (such as there being excessive splits between NS and NW on 210 and 422). However, that might be less of an issue given additional work on I-90 routes.

And, of course, there is the issue why the bond authorization includes expansion of NS, because, if one assumes that the NS district is roughly east of the Tri-State Tollway, I don't see any growth there. There is the proposed IDOT/Pace intelligent transportation project for the Edens Expressway-Skokie Highway, but unless they are planning something other than 620/626, I don't see much growth of service there. There are some grants for more Shuttle Bugs, but since that system had been cut back and the Braeside routes were given to Highland Park, again I don't see that as a big area for growth.

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Does NW do the #610 at all or is it just River cause when I was out there for the O"Hare shutdown I could have swore I saw NW buses on #610.

WebWatch usually indicates 1 or 2 NW buses, in addition to the 6 Axess Express (River) buses.

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Does NW do the #610 at all or is it just River cause when I was out there for the O"Hare shutdown I could have swore I saw NW buses on #610.

Both. Used to be mainly River, but since the expansion the split is 5 out of River and 2-3 out of NW. The interlines are hellishly tricky, however.

Just my opinion, NW will completely absorb 600,606,610 (assuming river's suburban Eldo's) eliminating need of Pace River and with BOS eventually on I-90, more trips will be added = more buses.. Then, 6400's will make their way in fizzing out Orions.. Any NABI's from South will find way to possibly North Shore (replacing Orions) and North.

There's a reason why River assumed half of the 600 series routes (and even then, when they were taken away from Academy they were split). In addition to what Jack has mentioned, deadhead time on some of these routes can be saved by splitting garages (that is, if you don't look into union work rules and the like). You might actually get a newer garage, but that doesn't necessarily correlate into route absorption either.

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... Any NABI's from South will find way to possibly North Shore (replacing Orions) and North.

I missed this part of the quote. All Orion Is are gone, as NABIs from West (after receiving 6324-6376) went to North Shore and North. The 2423 series NABIs are also gone from North for the same reason, although some showed up on Ravinia routes last summer.

The oldest series still in regular revenue service is 6000.

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Is anyone able to read anything into this sentence from today's Moving Forward:

Pace is planning for the gradual conversion of its fleet to CNG– compressed natural gas– beginning with the anticipated 2015 CNG fueling capabilities at its South Division facility in Markham.

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Is anyone able to read anything into this sentence from today's Moving Forward:

Pace is planning for the gradual conversion of its fleet to CNG compressed natural gas beginning with the anticipated 2015 CNG fueling capabilities at its South Division facility in Markham.

Don't read too much into it.

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I missed this part of the quote. All Orion Is are gone, as NABIs from West (after receiving 6324-6376) went to North Shore and North. The 2423 series NABIs are also gone from North for the same reason, although some showed up on Ravinia routes last summer.

The oldest series still in regular revenue service is 6000.

I didn't say Orion I's. I meant VI... but I did forget northshore did not have Orion VI's. The 2423's I knew and never mentioned.

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Is anyone able to read anything into this sentence from today's Moving Forward:

Pace is planning for the gradual conversion of its fleet to CNG– compressed natural gas– beginning with the anticipated 2015 CNG fueling capabilities at its South Division facility in Markham.

So what? They just want to buy CNG vehicles from now on?

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So what? They just want to buy CNG vehicles from now on?

I had noted that there must be some reason they asked for options for up to 250 when the base order,which would take care of South, would be 91, but by posing the question am unable to come up with a firm answer to it.

And, of course, they keep mentioning South without having pulled the trigger on it; I assume because the state funds haven't been appropriated.

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Moving Forward just had an item about groundbreaking for a Pace South Campus in Markham, which is not the garage, but next to it, and to contain "paratransit reservation and dispatch center, Pace‟s customer service department, safety and training, a body shop, vehicle acceptance/preparation, and a parts warehouse."

Apparently Pace got Jump Start money, and this is the answer to the periodic "have to replace the South Holland division" references.

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An update on the South Campus one:

Maybe Pace threw a curve ball in the 2015 budget by having the following in it (page 40):

“Jump Start” was to be funded with bond proceeds where debt service cost would be paid out of the State’s General Revenue Fund; however, a revenue increase has not been developed at this time to generate the necessary funds to allow the State to issue such bonds. Pace, however, has a pending grant request for $45 million to build out its South Campus project in Markham, Illinois.

Maybe a usual suspect (Gov. I'm in too close of a race) found the $45 million so he could get a photo op, including in Moving Forward.

However, as far as I can tell, this Moving Forward was the first time the project was explained.

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From a goggle search it was in several papers. Also whats going to happen to south holland?

I guess they try to sell the property to someone else, with or without the building on it. It is industrial property in the midst of an industrial zone.

Unlike former Safeway property in Harvey and Chicago Heights, they don't need it for a transit center.

Probably going to make it darn hard for those of us who want to see what's coming or going in the acceptance center lot, as the South garage is way off Dixie Highway.

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Moving Forward just had an item about groundbreaking for a Pace South Campus in Markham, which is not the garage, but next to it, and to contain "paratransit reservation and dispatch center, Pace‟s customer service department, safety and training, a body shop, vehicle acceptance/preparation, and a parts warehouse."

Apparently Pace got Jump Start money, and this is the answer to the periodic "have to replace the South Holland division" references.

I'll never understand why Customer Service was moved out of Arlington Heights to South Holland. I heard some rumors that most of the people hired were from the south and weren't having much luck making it to work up north. Funny, when I supervised the department, that didn't seem to be a real big problem. I guess it shows who is getting hired these days.

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Maybe it had more to do with space requirements even with the new building vanpool dept is actoss the street you can see their name on marker for the building going by on the 606

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I'll never understand why Customer Service was moved out of Arlington Heights to South Holland. I heard some rumors that most of the people hired were from the south and weren't having much luck making it to work up north....

More strange (and related to the use of long distance numbers for call and ride), customer service is still 847-364-PACE, even though that is a south Arlington Heights-Elk Grove number.

However, I wonder how much customer service does, in that the RTA handles the job of incorrect travel directions (and I am still hearing that they are incorrect).

I also wonder how centralized paratransit dispatch is going to be, since they claimed there was never the funds for it. Maybe Gov. in Trouble included it in the $45 million.

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Finally: July minutes posted:

Ordinance SBD #13-57 authorizes the award of a contract to Eldorado National (California), Inc. for the purchase, manufacture and delivery of forty foot low floor Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) powered transit buses, in an amount not to exceed $119,913,100.00.

So, even more Axess buses. It looks like $480K/bus, which would be under budget.

Contract award page now says:

410784

Vehicle Procurement, Rolling Stock

IFB

Purchase, Manufacture, and Delivery of Forty Foot Low Floor Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) Powered Transit Buses

ElDorado National (California) Inc.

$43,630,314.00

2/12/2015

Only took 19 months to post it. I assume the difference in dollar amounts is the base order (91--or 90 since 15500 showed up?) compared to options up to 250.

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