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Vergara to Enhance Customer Environment in Rolling Stock and at Passenger Facilities

CONTACT: Penny Bassett Hackett (973-491-7078)

NEWARK, NJ, July 11, 2001 -- NJ TRANSIT Board Chairman James Weinstein and NJ TRANSIT Executive Director Jeffrey A. Warsh today announced the appointment of internationally renowned Cesar Vergara to the newly created position of Chief Designer.

Vergara -- an award-winning industrial designer with more than 20 years of transit experience in North America, South American and in Europe -- will oversee the design of new NJ TRANSIT locomotives, rail coaches, buses and facilities, with his primary focus to enhance the customer environment in rolling stock and at NJ TRANSIT bus and rail facilities. The Corporation is preparing to receive more than 2,000 pieces of equipment by 2005.

"A person of Cesar's expertise is a rare find," said Weinstein, who is also New Jersey's Transportation Commissioner. "We are honored that he has chosen to join NJ TRANSIT and look forward to his contributions as we work to make NJ TRANSIT a truly world-class transportation organization."

"It is truly a coup for NJ TRANSIT to have attracted a man of Cesar's caliber to shepherd the future of the Corporations look and feel," said Warsh. "I know our customers will appreciate Cesar's presence when they step aboard our new rail cars and buses and enter our facilities. He will be a critical member of the team leading NJ TRANSIT into the 21st century, and I am pleased that Commissioner Weinstein has been supportive in our efforts to bring him aboard."

Vergara -- who turns 45 on August 1 -- comes to NJ TRANSIT from Walter Dorwin Teague Associates, an international design-consulting firm based in Redmond, Washington. During his time with Teague, Vergara worked on the new generation of Track Geometry Inspection Vehicles (TGIV), including one purchased by NJ TRANSIT that has been nominated for an international design award.

"I am pleased to a join dynamic transit Corporation with a stellar reputation in the industry," Vergara said. "This is a company on the move, and it is an incredible thrill for me to contribute my talents toward the goal of making NJ TRANSIT an organization that serves as a model of excellence throughout the world."

Vergara spent ten years as Amtrak's chief designer, leading design efforts on the Superliner II, the Genesis Engine, the Surfliners and the United States Postal Service's "Celebrate the Century Express" -- a train which visited NJ TRANSIT's Hoboken Terminal last September during the 2000 Try Transit Festival. He also worked on the Americans with Disabilities Act and was responsible for standardizing Amtrak's graphics. Prior to his Amtrak service, Vergara was the chief designer for Ferrocarriles Nacionales de Mxico (National Railways of Mexico) and a senior designer with Henry Dreyfuss Associates in New York. He began his career at Utveckilngs Design in Stockholm, where he worked on numerous rail projects including the X-2000 high speed train.

Vergara has been a featured writer in a number of books worldwide, including The Art of the Streamliner by Bob Johnston and All About Railroads by William Vantuono, and was interviewed by the History Channel in 1999. He holds Masters and Bachelors degrees in Industrial design from University College of Art and Design in Stockholm, Sweden -- the oldest design school in the world.

Vergara resides in Ridgefield, Connecticut with his wife and four children.

NJ TRANSIT is the nation's largest statewide public transportation system providing bus, rail and light rail services for 383,900 daily commuters on 240 bus routes, two light rail lines and 12 commuter rail lines. It is the third largest transit system in the country with 162 rail stations, 26 light rail stations and more than 17,000 bus stops linking major points in New Jersey, New York and Philadelphia.