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About MVTArider

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    Reporting From the Twin Cities

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    Twin Cities, MN

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  1. From a transitfan perspective Gilligs everywhere can be boring, but from a general rider perspective they are a solid bus and fairly decent ride. AC usually kicks butt as well without deafening you with a fan motor like other models. Also very interesting to hear the drivers like the Proterras. I haven't really heard much feedback on them since it's still a new model. IMHO I agree on the Xcelsior, the _40LF and 40LFR were superior quality and ride to the X_40. Xcelsior is still a decent model, just not as solid as the ones it replaced.
  2. IIRC ~3-5 days to build from a stack of parts to complete drive-able unit. The additional time comes from lack of production slots, quality control inspections and sign-offs, spec changes, repairing anything that didn't pass inspection, etc. Plus in this case if they are shipping shells down to Crookston, (or getting the buses built in Alabama?) that adds time. A lack of worker motivation to apply such a bland boring looking livery may be a factor too 😛
  3. MVTArider

    Metro Transit

    For future reference, as I'm not paying $15 to download the doc, some biodiesel and electric bus bid details from a quick skim: Proposals due September 10th, 2019 Last date to exercise options on contract - five years from execution date. Pilot electric bus due January 29th, 2021 Base order diesel buses, 15 due by August 1st, 2021, 5 due by December 31st, 2021, 2 (for MTS or opt-out) due by August 12th, 2022. Base order electric buses, 18 in addition to pilot due by August 1st, 2021. (Ref 19P122 pg. 5) No electric units for MTS are included in the base order. They appear to be staying with the same American Seating InSight seat with padding (Thank goodness, was wondering if they would switch to solid ones like other TAs) Optional equipment specs, presumably to be available to add on the 159 option units, it looks like MVTA and other opt-outs will be using some of the options: Voith Transmission (instead of ZF) American Seating Co. Vision, KC548, 2005, seat models Suburban type luggage racks with reading lamps BRT Styling options, definitely intended for use on future ABRT and BRT: Widest rear door available, slide-glide or plug Exterior exit door activation button Luggage rack on curbside front housing info screens, and next stop visual for rear facing wheelchair position. BRT exterior faring and styling package Metro Transit and MVTA graphics package Stop request touch strips (these are standard on the ABRT units and MVTA 40' buses) Plan holders (so far) are the usual suspects, Gillig, NFI, Proterra. Interestingly, Nova, and BYD are not listed. It's still early though so we will see if they jump in. I'm guessing anyone who is really serious about bidding though would have officially downloaded the request for proper review by now. If I had to bet I would put my money on Gillig winning, they should easily rank high on qualifications. That said, NFI should also have a great shot. We'll see in September or October when it's awarded.
  4. 🤔 Selkirk Transit Flin Flon Transit GO Transit
  5. Some pics of 1909 on display at Train Day back in June: Also this is Jefferson Lines 100th year of service. I haven't heard of any special events, or maybe they've already had something, but it's cool to see them still going. https://www.jeffersonlines.com/100-years/
  6. That was just a demo test, final shield type they picked was a solid plexi door that provides pretty good coverage when shut, or it can be left open if the driver chooses not to use it. A farebox is not a problem, buses in the UK and other countries have a completely enclosed driver compartment with a locking door and sliding or solid window, the farebox just gets built into the bodywork with a little cut-around for customer access to the slots. Gillig, NFI, Nova, etc. just need to do a little engineering to get the right angles for some plexi and base walls, and they can get a completely enclosed compartment as well should agencies start demanding it. Any pics of the ones WT is using? I thought the ones MCTS had on their buses looked pretty solid, though again a good gap over the box however: Milwaukee County Transit System 5138 Driver Area by J. Mc., on Flickr
  7. MVTArider

    Metro Transit

    I see MTN on the 84 often, and occasionally the 16 when downtown or Midway. Haven't actually ridden one lately however. Exterior they look okay from what I've seen. It slightly annoys me they didn't get the 5 from East in the 60036-60044 range assigned though as those were originally MTS units. Also on moves I noticed one of the ex-RTS hybrids on 54 last week, so a few must be at East or South now. (Unless Hastus randomly plugged a 54 run in as part of a Nicollet run block.) A couple other observations, driver shields seem to be getting installed as the newer Gilligs are tuned up and deep cleaned. I've been noticing a lot more 16xx and 17xx with them lately. From my observations over the past month 98% of drivers keep them open. (At least on the routes I ride) South Phantoms are at least 6, 2-3 are the 900 series. I have not seen any in service yet this summer.
  8. Anyone else find humor in that if the f in flyer were capitalized the whole sentence would have a completely different meaning on this board? --- Can anyone recommend some cheaper decent areas to stay at in Toronto that would still have good access via transit to the city center/streetcar network area? Was checking hotels for that weekend in downtown, a little pricey! I'm not sure if I can go or not, but want to research now while prices on hotels are typically lower.
  9. I got these blurry pics of a baby MCI coach in Winnipeg 6 weeks ago but just getting around to uploading now, J3000, J3500, or maybe just a short engineering tester for a new system of some sort? Apologies the pics aren't clear, it was zipping by on King Edward pretty fast. I can't clearly make out what the badge by the door says when I zoom in, but to me it doesn't look like J4500, more like J3000. That's mostly speculation though. I was thinking it was a 35' unit but looking at the pics it seems more like 30'. I'm not very familiar with the individual lengths of the body panels/windows though.
  10. Whoops, that's what I get for reading too fast Still it makes it sound like there must be at least 3-4 agencies getting the new electric units, as I doubt there is one agency getting them that just happens to have 20 service centers around it. After all Cummins products aren't that bad so as to require that type of service center density.
  11. Nice, I wonder who those 20 agencies are initially getting electric Gilligs?
  12. MVTArider

    Metro Transit

    Happened to drive by South again tonight. 7109 and 8013 were in the front lineup. Also at least four Phantoms on the side mixed with some LF/BRT and some D60 in the far lot.
  13. MVTArider

    Metro Transit

    I will note any Phantoms or D60 on reserve that do run during the Fair won't necessarily be on the Fair services, spare stuff often pops up on peak period trips. If South is still using 40' units for driver shuttles during the afternoon shift changes on A Line they may also have a Phantom or two NIS at 46th St during the Fair. (They did last year) Otherwise assuming the Phantoms will be pulled after the Fair the typical MO on retiring equipment is to run it out, so the first couple weeks of September there may be a few sightings. Also during State Fair Lorenz will likely be running Phantoms on some of the free park and ride shuttles. They still have some of the older units with S50 as well.
  14. MVTArider

    Metro Transit

    2006 3200-3214 D60HF you can probably find during rush hours on Marquette/2nd Aves in downtown Minneapolis. They are based out of Ruter and run peak period express to the north suburbs. AM they would be inbound on Marquette, PM they would be outbound on 2nd. We have a few 2003-2004 31xx left as well, but those are on standby status for the State Fair. If they were to run they would likely be on short peak period assignments on either express or a local/ltd stop. Otherwise A line, C line are the arterial BRT services, A will have Gillig BRT+, C will of course have all the XE60/XD60. Red Line has the only NovaBus LFS in the metro on it, but only runs every 20 min. Marquette/2nd is also great to check out during rush hours in general on weekdays as it's got tons of bus action. Metro Transit, MVTA, Southwest, Plymouth, Maple Grove all can be seen. EDIT: of course the Blue and Green lines are LRT if you want some shots of the trains. Also on the U of MN campus there are usually some Van Hool A300L running during summer session on the 121 connector.
  15. I agree, much better looking! I do wish they would update the exterior styling on their buses a bit though. The LF+ still looks cobbled together to me with the headlight modules obviously being the same as the BRT ones.
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