In the attached local TV news report, Peter Rogoff, Administrator of the Federal Transit Administration in the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), was in Austin to deliver a $38 million grant for the new MetroRapid bus project run by the Capital Metropolitan Transportation Authority.
The project will bring new Nova Bus vehicles (purchasing options for up to 80) and 77 new stations to the city areas with the highest and most dense ridership. All buses will be equipped with a signal priority technology that will allow them to extend green lights as they approach intersections.
Bus Rapid Transit combines the best of rail and bus services. It is an affordable transportation solution with a proven track record and quick start of operations.
“We will have dedicated bus lanes in the downtown area and it will make the transit trips much faster and easier to use for the community,” mentioned Linda Watson, President and CEO of Capital Metro in an interview with local TV news.
To optimize the fuel efficiency of their vehicles, Capital Metro has opted for the Nova eCooling system, Nova Bus’ proprietary electric engine cooling system. The vehicles also come with a wealth of competitive advantages such as the proven HePEX system, made of cross-linked polyethylene tubing that is light, easy to maintain and corrosion resistant. The HePEX system will mean significant reduction in life cycle cost in terms of materials and labor for Capital Metro.
In the same news report, Peter Rogoff concluded: “When seeing the wheel congestion figures that come out the surveys we do across America, it is very clear that this kind of solution can be a cost-effective way of enabling people to keep money in their pocket rather than handlling it at the gas pump”.
This project investment will be conducive to the economic development of the City of Austin and attractive to new riders. Capital Metro expects 20,000 boardings a day when the service starts in 2014.
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