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About MVTArider

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    Reporting From the Twin Cities

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  1. MVTArider

    Photos on the CPTDB Wiki

    I'll admit I've never had any issue with different crop ratios affecting row height, I'm mainly focused on the info. But I would be supportive of standardizing to a couple required crop ratios or one if necessary. Not sure if allowing one ratio only would be best though, as some photos that crop well to a 16:9 may not be aesthetically crop-able to 4:3, or vice versa. So yeah, that's my opinion on the matter
  2. MVTArider

    Metro Transit

    Random updates: Metro Transit has trimmed down a a lot of trips to deal with a severe shortages of drivers: https://www.metrotransit.org/service-changes-beginning-july-31-will-improve-systemwide-reliability 17 new 40' diesel Gillig Low Floors and 3 new 40' Gillig BRT in ABRT scheme are on order for 2019. Also in the minutes it sounds like the XE60 for C Line service will be the guinea pigs for electric buses in the Metro Transit fleet. They will be evaluated and have bugs and issues worked out over the first couple of years of operation. Then if all goes well expect even more electric buses from Gillig and/or NFI in following orders. A different note in the meeting minutes also mentioned one of the Bombardier trains was due to surpass 1,000,000 miles of service last month. https://metrocouncil.org/getdoc/d4ffe51c-a20a-48cf-86d6-b91a51af07e3/Minutes.aspx The new 54M service from Mall of America to Maplewood Mall via downtown Saint Paul seems to be going well. I have yet to ride it out to Maplewood myself as it's been a busy summer. Unfortunately it is still a solid 40' bus operation on Weekdays and Saturdays, with artics only operated on Sundays. I had hoped and heard a rumor they would switch to artics on the M trips during the weekdays, but apparently not. The buses every 10 minutes on the main 54 line however do seem to help with crowding during the peak periods. Also speaking of MOA, the groundbreaking ceremony to start construction on the new transit center was held last week: https://minnesota.cbslocal.com/2018/08/02/moa-transit-hub-renovation/ https://www.metrotransit.org/mall-of-america And some observations: I have seen Phantoms 1032 on the 54 and 1042 on the 7 in the past few weeks. Outside of South there are some 31xx D60 lined up along with ABRT wrapped 7109. I'm guessing all of them will be put in service during the State Fair. Operator barriers have been installed on the newest Gilligs, such as 8012, 1784, and the 179x from what I've seen. They are still collecting feedback and data on them.
  3. MVTArider

    MetroLINK Rock Island County IL

    Metro pics from the morning of June 12th: I was able to ride an XN40, a Proterra, and the Axess 40'. XN40 is a typical Xcelsior, decent ride. Proterra was nice and quiet. I though the Axess was a very solid bus for 10 years in service. It rattled less than the 2012 XN40. As for the system operation a lot of routes are 30-60 minute frequency, with 10 Red every 15 minutes. The two Proterra electrics are assigned to the 20, which goes from Moline Centre Station to Southpark Mall TC and the Airport. A few ElDorado EZ Rider II were seen on various feeder routes. I didn't seen any EZ Rider II Max, but I also didn't hang around the different transit centers for too long.
  4. MVTArider

    Iowa Transit

    On the way home from the 2018 BHA convention I stopped in the Quad Cities and Cedar Rapids. (All of the photos are from Tuesday June 12th) Bettendorf Transit I didn't even bother trying to get photos, all I spotted on the Red 1 at Moline Centre Station was a plain while Ford/Eldo cutaway. So I guess that planned order for MiDi didn't go through? Davenport Citibus Nothing too exciting here, just a few new Gillig LF 35' w/ BRT front, and they've also gotten at least one ex-DTA LF. Otherwise the same 2004 and 2011 LF 35'. The Orion V and 29' LF are retired I'm assuming. All of the 2004 and 2011 LF had wraps on, except the ex-DTA unit. Cedar Rapids Transit I had extra time coming back so decided to make a quick stop at the GTC, and got there just in time to catch the main pulse. The bulk of the service is all Gillig LF 35'. A couple newer 25xx ones were spotted. I think those are 2015 ones that replaced the SLF but they could be newer. I had thought the RTS were gone and they were simply running all Gilligs now, but heh, I guess 25 years of service isn't too much to expect from an RTS I was told previously that Cedar Rapids is getting a few Xcelsiors eventually. So I assume if that is still the case they will be coming soon. However from checking the bus tracker just now there is/was an RTS still running a peak period trip. Also to note, it was 10 years ago on the day I stopped by downtown Cedar Rapids, that the massive floods of 2008 devastated the downtown core. It took a while, but it looks like downtown is finally back on it's feet. Here's an overview photo of the GTC on June 12th, 2018: and if anyone is interested there's a fascinating video on YT by E. Hindman that was taken on the morning of June 12th, 2008 of the floodwaters in downtown CR: Cedar Rapids, IA Flood of 2008 including a few views of the GTC area and a clip of an EAGL RTS running through floodwaters on the prison evac shuttle.
  5. MVTArider

    Champaign-Urbana MTD

    Some pics from my stop in Champaign on June 11th: I also spotted a D60LF that morning but was unable to get a photo.
  6. MVTArider

    Winnipeg Transit 300-369 (2018 XD40)

    Ooh, they got the same livery as my fridge!
  7. Here is a rough overview of the public transport scene in the city and vicinity of Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom. I was able to spend a couple days there back in March. Granted it's not a current view of what's on the street, but it should still be fairly representative. Buses: As with most major cities and urban areas in the UK, major public transit bus routes are privately operated for profit by multiple bus operators. The big players in the Glasgow market are First Greater Glasgow and McGill's Buses. First operates a slightly diverse fleet of ADL and Wrightbus products. The majority of the routes (from what I observed) were unbranded and simply operated with generic First liveried units. 9/9A, 500 Airport, and a few others were line branded and thus operated by assigned units to correspond to each route. 9/9A was predominantly Wrightbus Eclipse/Volvo chassis, 500 a slew of fresh Enviro 200MMC. Other common models in the fleet are the ADL Enviro 300/E30D, 200/E20D, Enviro400, Wrightbus Gemini, and Wrightbus StreetLite. Other older bodies such as Plaxton President, Marshall Capital, and Optare Solo were also spotted. McGill's has quite the varied fleet, due in large part to taking over Arriva operations in Glasgow a while back. Newer units include some lovely M-B Citaros, while a variety of older Pointer/DART SLF, Optare, Wright Eclipse/Volvo, and Scania units can be spotted on their various services. There are also a number of other smaller operators which typically operate routes under contract for the SPT. These are routes that aren't feasible to run on a money making basis due to lower passenger volume, but still necessary to provide fair and equal access to different communities and locations. I didn't get a lot of photos of the different operators, but Avondale Coaches and Garelochead Coaches were a couple I managed to snap. Avondale runs a fleet of ex-London units bought from their various operators and left in the red scheme, while Garelochhead had a 2014 Optare Solo SR electric working on its assigned 100 shuttle: Stagecoach also had a small presence with a few commuter type routes operated by various chassis ADL 300 units, Enviro 400MMC, and Plaxton bodied coaches. I'm not very familiar with the Stagecoach operations around there, so some of these I noted as Stagecoach West Scotland may actually be a different Stagecoach operating unit. A photo of a commemorative liveried KC589 for the 85th Anniversary of Western SMT operations is also attached: Subway: While buses comprise the bulk of public transit operations in and around Glasgow, the one of a kind Glasgow Subway is also well worth a ride. Currently it is running with late 1970s built Metro-Cammell cars, these were the replacements for the much older rolling stock than ran for many decades. (look up the subway on Youtube, some cool vids) Glasgow Subway is the third oldest subway system in the world. It consists of a basic ring around the central city area, with a track in each direction (clockwise and counter-clockwise). The tracks are narrow gauge and train cars are smaller, which adds to the uniqueness. Some of the station platforms are also pretty narrow! I hope you enjoyed this brief look at Glasgow transport operations. If anyone is interested I took a lot of photos, which can be seen via various sets organized in this collection on my Flickr: Collection: Transport in Glasgow
  8. MVTArider

    King County Metro - Seattle, Washington

    To be fair any transit bus will likely get a few loose panels and rattles after many years of service, but on an aside I've noticed newer Xcelsiors (ones I've ridden at numerous agencies) tend to rattle more than their LF/LFR ancestors. It'll be interesting to see how they hold up long term at KCM and as a model in general. (Gosh a couple more years and 2008-2009 X_40 will be starting to retire already from some systems)
  9. MVTArider

    FlixBus Launches in United States

    Thanks for sharing, I wasn't aware they had already entered the US market. I did spot one of their (contractor owned?) TX27 in London earlier this year, a very eye catching livery! Given the struggles of Megabus and GLI it'll be interesting to see if they can survive long term. I'm guessing though that gas prices will start going back up eventually, so that may give the motorcoach line run business a boost.
  10. MVTArider

    Gillig product discussion

    Well I got to give Gillig a little credit for at least attempting to update the 1980's vintage headlights on the standard front. Still I think that is a rather funky looking redesign. IMO even a 2003 Caetano Nimbus bodywork* has a more stylish appearance with the headlights: *EDIT, should clarify bodywork as it's a British bus, so technically it's a Dart SLF.
  11. MVTArider

    Milwaukee County Transit System

    Recent news from Milwaukee: Milwaukee County advances grant request for BRT hybrids, orders more diesel buses
  12. MVTArider

    Winnipeg Transit 300-369 (2018 XD40)

    Would be nice if they could add the T logo on the rear, though I guess many of the rears will eventually be covered in wraps for pizzapizza or whatnot.
  13. MVTArider

    BHA 2018 Convention - Dayton/Cincinnati

    Yes 9801-9854 would be the ETi/Skoda trolleys 1401-1404 are the dual mode Gillig BRTPlus bodied Vossloh-Kiepe ones. Then 10xx - 17xx and 27xx, 28xx, 29xx are all their standard and hybrid diesel Gillig fleet. I don't think they have any New Flyer units left in active service.
  14. MVTArider

    BHA 2018 Convention - Dayton/Cincinnati

    Ooh, they have a real time map with bus numbers! http://ridetime.greaterdaytonrta.org/bustime/home.jsp Assuming the ID numbers in the trackers are correct, I've spotted one 98xx on the 2, two 98xx and 1404 on the 4. Otherwise it looks like the diesel Gilligs will be easy to find Right, that's the Dayton Trolleys I was referring to, was just curious if anyone was aware of any newer details. I'm guessing watching the real-time maps will be the best way to stay informed at this point
  15. MVTArider

    BHA 2018 Convention - Dayton/Cincinnati

    Any news on the current state of ETB operations on the regular routes? From the last update on Dayton Trolleys it sounded like the 1 could possibly have a new one, 4 would be the best chance of seeing some, and if the 8 has the wire installed by now that would be a possibility too. I'm hoping to ride one or two and get some non-diesel regular service pics before the tour day