NJ TRANSIT PLACES FIRST NEW ARTICULATED BUS INTO SERVICE
65-Percent Additional Capacity On Longer Bus
April 30, 2020
NEWARK, NJ — NJ TRANSIT has put into revenue service the first of 25 additional new articulated buses paid for with $17 million in federal funding. The new articulated bus will increase the on-board capacity by more than 65 percent, allowing for greater social distancing and eventually more customers along one of NJ TRANSIT’s most heavily-traveled bus lines.
“I am grateful for the Federal Transit Administration’s grant award, and for the support of our congressional delegation, that allowed
NJ TRANSIT to enhance the experience for our customers with the expansion of our articulated bus fleet,’’ said President & CEO Kevin Corbett. “In these times of social distancing, the additional capacity on these buses is critical. Once the COVID-19 crisis subsides, these buses will play a major role in accommodating more customers and reducing wait times on the routes with the highest ridership.’’
Bus Route No. 126, which serves customers in heavily-populated Hudson County, began using the new articulated bus on Tuesday, April 28. A standard commuter bus can accommodate 62 customers while the articulated bus has a total capacity of 104, a more than 65-percent increase.
In December 2019, NJ TRANSIT received $17 million in federal funding to enhance commuter bus service, expand capacity and reduce wait times for riders on dozens of high ridership bus routes in Essex, Hudson and Bergen counties. The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) funds will be used to expand the articulated bus fleet by 25.
In January 2019, the NJ TRANSIT Board of Directors approved the purchase of 85 articulated buses to allow for the complete retirement of the current articulated fleet, which has been in revenue service for more than 15 years. Retiring older buses in the fleet increases mechanical reliability and ultimately helps better serve customers with improved on-time performance and important new customer amenities.
Articulated buses are 60 feet long and consist of two segments permanently attached to each other through a pivot point which allows them to negotiate urban traffic and sharp turns.
The new articulated buses feature low flooring, which allows customers to embark and disembark more quickly, wheelchair ramps and camera systems to improve customer security and ensure bus operators are better informed of their surroundings. New customer amenities include USB charging ports, bicycle racks, an improved intercom system and LED lighting. Articulated buses are used on routes where ridership levels warrant the use of higher-capacity vehicles.
All customers are reminded that Governor Murphy’s Executive Order 125 became effective earlier this month and requires NJ TRANSIT to limit occupancy by passengers at 50-percent of the stated maximum vehicle capacity on all buses, trains and light rail vehicles, in addition to the requirement for customers and personnel onboard vehicles to wear a face covering.
All staff and customers on NJ TRANSIT vehicles are required to wear face coverings, an additional measure the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says can slow the spread of COVID-19.
As an added precautionary measure to protect bus operators and customers, NJ TRANSIT has implemented rear-door boarding on all bus routes where rear-boarding is available. Seats near the bus operator have been taken out of service to allow for proper social distancing for the operator. Customers are encouraged to use the NJ TRANSIT mobile ticketing app or purchase paper tickets prior to boarding to limit cash transactions with the bus operator. Essential travel only is encouraged during these times.
About NJ TRANSIT
NJ TRANSIT is the nation''s largest statewide public transportation system providing more than 925,000 weekday trips on 253 bus routes, three light rail lines, 12 commuter rail lines and through Access Link paratransit service. It is the third largest transit system in the country with 166 rail stations, 62 light rail stations and more than 19,000 bus stops linking major points in New Jersey, New York and Philadelphia.