WINNIPEG - February 28, 2012 - To improve service to the public while ensuring value for taxpayers' money, Winnipeg Transit is recommending the purchase of 20 pre-owned, 60-foot articulated buses from New Flyer Industries.
Winnipeg Transit has been offered an opportunity to purchase these buses at less than 10 per cent of their new cost of $625,000. The negotiated purchase price of $53,000 (plus PST) per vehicle includes delivery to Winnipeg, two years of indoor heated storage, and approximately $11,500 per bus of refurbishment to be undertaken by New Flyer Industries.
The offer represents a timely opportunity to undertake substantive and needed fleet expansion in a cost-effective manner.
An articulated bus is a single-deck designed vehicle used in public transportation which comprises two rigid sections linked by a pivoting joint. They are also commonly referred to as tandem or stretch buses.
Renewed growth in Transit demand has steadily consumed the current Transit system's capacity to the point where pass-ups and overcrowding have become more prevalent. The articulated buses would be dispatched during weekday peak periods to augment existing service and alleviate overcrowding and pass-ups. Operating 16 articulated buses for seven hours each weekday would relieve many instances of peak period overcrowding on several of the City's most heavily used routes.
An articulated bus can carry over 40 per cent more passengers than a regular bus; most Winnipeg Transit buses seat 38 people while articulated buses seat 54. This additional capacity would allow Transit to provide improved levels of service during peak periods.
The buses would be refurbished and outfitted with Winnipeg Transit's onboard technical systems prior to them being placed in service in 2014, or sooner.
A pre-screening inspection of the buses, performed by Transit technicians before making these recommendations, indicates they are in good condition. Having familiarity with New Flyer buses, Transit is very familiar with the design and maintenance requirements necessary to successfully operate this type of bus.
Council approval is required before the Public Service can implement any of the recommendations. The Standing Policy Committee on Infrastructure Renewal and Public Works will consider the report on Monday, March 5, 2012.