Jump to content

My Bold Prediction for Transit Bus Orders for South Central US (AR, KS, LA, MO and OK) for rest of the decade


Buzz2kb
 Share

Recommended Posts

Here are my bold predictions on what heavy-duty buses transit agencies in Central US as defined by this board will order for the rest of this decade (Illinois and Texas, due to their sizes, will be covered by their own threads). States are listed alphabetically, while agencies in each state are listed in descending order of fleet size whenever possible:

Arkansas and Oklahoma

Arkansas is a pretty unexciting state to predict, with the only new buses of interest being the upcoming Gillig CNG LF's (length or body style unknown, although preliminary information is suggesting 35ft. BRT's) with Rock Region Metro (the future name for Central Arkansas Transit Authority in Little Rock), a 100% Gillig agency.

The only other intrigues are whether Hot Springs Intracity Transit will get any 35ft. Gillig LF to replace its 35ft. Optima Opus and if Ozark Regional Transit (NW Arkansas) will get any brand-new heavy-duty buses before the end of the decade.

For EMBARK (Oklahoma City), the focus will undoubtedly the successors to its 2003 D40LF fleet. Right now, advantage to Gillig LF. However, whether it will get more diesel buses or CNG's is anyone guess, as it has so far been an outlier from Oklahoma's trend towards CNG buses. I can see a small chance for NFI's XD/XN40 here as well.

On the other hand, further Gillig BRT CNG buses seems to be a sure bet for Tulsa Transit to replace its 2004-06 Gillig LF's (including the sole hybrid bus). However, Eldorado National will fight hard against Gillig LF with the CNG version of its EZ-Rider II BRT for the replacement of 2004 and 2006 EZ-Rider II's.

Finally, at Cleveland Area Rapid Transit/CART(Norman), if the Gillig LF CNG (intended for Orion V replacement?) posted in its Facebook page is a sign of the future, expect more similar buses to replace its D40LF's as well.

Kansas and Missouri

Both are fairly unexciting states to predict, except for a couple of likely extinctions: The Kansas-built Optima Opus from the fleets of

KU on Wheels(in partnership with Lawrence Transit System) Topeka Metro and Wichita Transit by the end of the decade- ; and New Flyer buses from fleets of City Utilities (Springfield) and COMO Connect (Columbia). All of these are likely to be replaced by more Gillig LF's (CNG buses in COMO Connect's cases).

Elsewhere in both states, expect more Gillig LF's to replace the remaining Phantoms (KCATA/Kansas City?, The Jo/Johnson County KS and Wichita Transit) or older LF's (Jefftran/Jefferson City KCATA, St. Joseph Transit, Metro St Louis and Wichita Transit) with more CNG buses on the way for KCATA.

Louisiana

The battlegrounds for bus manufacturers appears to be New Orleans RTA/NORTA and Sportran (Shrevport). When NORTA's first post-Katrina buses (2008 Orion VII 35ft. NG's) are up for replacement around 2020, Gillig may salivate at the prospect of an upset with an agency long-associated with Canadian bus brands (NFI and Orion), but IMHO the NFI XD35 is a strong favorite here. I don't rule out the possibility that NORTA may not need 35ft. buses anymore after route restructurings, and XD40's may be ordered as Orion VII replacements instead.

At Sportran, as its 2003-05 Gillig LF's are up for imminent replacement, Gillig may want to fight back recent gains by NFI, now that it also offers CNG. But I'm inclined to see more XN35's and XN40's as replacement for these, and possibly their 2007 sister buses as well. The other interesting developments are the fate of the ex-Gwinnett County Transit Orion VII OG and NABI 40-LFW CNG buses with Lafayette Transit System, as they seems never to be seen in service, and the replacement of its last diesel Gllig LF's there after NFI's shock victory with XN35's there.

Elsewhere, expect the remaining agencies to stick with the Gillig LF's for Phantom (Alexandria, Baton Rouge Jefferson Parish and Monroe), Bluebird Ultra LF (Baton Rouge) and maybe older Gillig LF (Alexandria, Houma and Jefferson Parish) replacement.

Hope that you will enjoy my analysis, and comments are always welcome!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Elsewhere in both states, expect more Gillig LF's to replace the remaining Phantoms (KCATA/Kansas City?, The Jo/Johnson County KS and Wichita Transit) or older LF's (Jefftran/Jefferson City KCATA, St. Joseph Transit, Metro St Louis and Wichita Transit) with more CNG buses on the way for KCATA.

Hope that you will enjoy my analysis, and comments are always welcome!

The KCATA will be all CNG by 2025. I live in KC and that is very correct. And ALL of the Phantoms for The Metro are retired. The Jo still has theirs running strong, but will be gone within the next few years. I have to check and fan the Metro and see if more CNGs are on the way, their 33 2002 Advantages are on the chopping block, but still running strong. In 2017-2018, some of those Gillig LFs will be the BRT Plus CNGs for a new BRT line in the stages of development, the Prospect MAX.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...