Thursday, April 21, 2011

PAT to Buy New Buses

Thanks to help from a federal grant, the Port Authority of Allegheny County is in the process of buying 80 new buses to be ready for use late next year.

Port Authority spokesman Jim Ritchie says 35 of the 80 new buses are articulated or “bendy” buses, meant to lessen overcrowding on some of the Authority’s busiest routes.

The total number of PAT buses won’t change, though, because the incoming vehicles will replace old ones that cost too much to maintain.

Ritchie says a $22.7 million grant from the federal government will help pay the $41.5 million total.

“A good chunk of it’s going to come out of that, and that means we’ll be able to spend less capital dollars on the remaining bill, and we can use that in other areas across our system to maintain busways and light rail system,” says Ritchie.

Ritchie says if the Port Authority Board finalizes the deal April 29, the buses should be ready by summer or fall of 2012.

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