Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 18

2018 BUS & PARATRANSIT CONFERENCE

Greater Dayton RTA Launches Design
For New NexGen Fleet
THE GREATER DAYTON (OH)
Regional Transit Authority (RTA)
recently unveiled the design for its
NexGen electric trolleys, an update that
will be incorporated into the agency's
recent order of 26 new dual-mode, battery- and electric-wire-powered buses set
to hit the streets in early 2019.
The term "dual-mode" means that
the buses run on both the traditional
electric trolley wire infrastructure and
on lithium oxide batteries that charge
while on the wire and can independently power the vehicle for up to
15 miles of service at 50 mph.
The bright green and silver metallic
design debuted on one of four prototypes of the NexGen bus that RTA has
been testing since 2014. The success of
that testing led to the agency's decision
to purchase 26 more buses, along with
plans to order an additional 15 buses
soon for a total of 45 vehicles-the largest bus contract in RTA's history.
"RTA's NexGen dual-mode electric
buses feature a unique, crisp and sleek
vehicle design, so we wanted the vehicle
colors and any graphics to complement
the style of this great looking bus," said
Chief Executive Officer Mark Donaghy.
The RTA fleet includes both trolleybuses, which operate on 124 miles
of electric trolley wires powering seven
routes, and diesel buses, which handle
the rest of the system's 29 routes. The

NexGen vehicles will replace the current
ETI/Skoda trolleybus fleet, which has
been in service since 1998.
Introduction of the NexGen fleet also
will allow RTA to convert two routes
from diesel to electric service, and several more routes will be evaluated for
conversion in the coming months.
RTA Chief Capital Officer Bob
Ruzinsky worked with Carmen Gaines,
an agency graphic designer, to incorporate historical bus designs and color
combinations used in Dayton over the
past 100 years into the new NexGen
scheme. The chosen design emulates the
classic two-color green and silver combination last used in the 1970s; it will be
used to rebrand the remaining prototype
dual-mode electric buses and all future
NexGen vehicles and will complement
the updated design of the diesel buses
RTA started receiving in 2016.
In addition, each of the electric buses
being built will feature its own "fun
fact" and will showcase a bit of RTA history as a way to share the agency's story
across the Dayton region. "Adding the
'Welcome Aboard fun fact' to the entry
side of each bus is a way to give each
bus its own personality," Ruzinsky said.
Electric trolleybuses have a rich history in Dayton. Electricity first started
powering public transit in the city in
1888, with streetcars then the main
mode of transportation. After a large

RTA graphic designer Carmen Gaines displays the first NexGen bus in its new bright green and silver
color scheme. Note the "Fun Fact" on the side of the vehicle.

car barn fire destroyed the majority
of the streetcar fleet in 1932, the city
began to adopt the "new" technology of electric trolleybuses to replace
streetcars. In the decades since, Dayton
has continued to operate electric trolleybuses and today remains only one of
five U.S. cities to do so.
These "green" electric vehicles, with
bodies by Gillig and electrification, a
traction motor and poles from Kiepe
Electric, both reduce RTA's carbon
footprint and save on fuel costs. Each

NexGen electric trolleybus has up to a
20-year life expectancy, compared to an
estimated 12 years for a diesel bus.
"RTA's objective for this project has
been to leverage our existing trolleybus
infrastructure investment to expand
electric service with a vehicle design
that combines the flexibility and efficiency of a standard diesel coach with
the advantages of electric propulsion,"
Donaghy said. "The NexGen fleet will
serve the Dayton region well for many
years to come."

CamTran Provides the Link
Between Families and Food
ON THE FIRST Wednesday of every

LTD Launches Pilot Program
For Service Animals
CONFUSION REGARDING service

whether an animal is a service animal
animals on public transportation is not
and what task the animal is trained to
new. Public transit
perform. The new cards
agencies have struggled
indicate to drivers that
to find a balance
the rider has already
between meeting the
been asked these quesneeds of passengers who
tions and, therefore,
require these animals
does not need to be
and fairly enforcing
asked again.
rules that limit animals
While not a service
on buses or trains.
animal certification,
One of the biggest
the new voluntary
complaints from riders
program is meant to
with service animals is
benefit both riders
that they are stopped
and operators by minievery time they board
mizing unnecessary
a bus and asked a series
barriers to boarding
of questions, slowing
while still allowing the
down the boarding
flexibility for anyone
process and creating an
who chooses to bring a
uncomfortable situation
service animal without
for them. Some riders
a rider card. The key to
A pilot program for riders with service
have complained about animals is under way in Eugene, OR.
this program is that it
being singled out, fosis voluntary, free and
tering feelings of discrimination.
only takes a few minutes to get the paw
Earlier this year, Lane Transit District
print stamp.
(LTD) in Eugene, OR, introduced a volOver the next year, LTD will collect
untary pilot program, funded through
data related to the program that will
a grant from Oregon DOT, that aims to
provide information, best practices and
streamline the boarding process for ridlessons learned, with the intention of
ers traveling with service animals. Early
sharing findings with other communiindications show that it is helping.
ties and public transit organizations.
LTD offers the option to stamp a
For more information about this
"paw print" on rider cards. Previously,
pilot program, please visit www.ltd.org/
bus operators had been required to ask
service-animals.

18 | Passenger Transport

food boxes from the distribution line
month, CamTran in Johnstown, PA,
and load them onto the buses for the
offers shared ride and fixed-route bus
participants, before driving participants
service to the Greater Johnstown Area
home-often conveying them to other
Vocational Technical School for benefiappointments along the way.
ciaries of the Greater Pittsburgh ComFor CamTran, this staple initiative is
munity Food Bank's Produce to People
yet another opportunity to provide outinitiative.
standing service to its valued passengers.
Produce for People has grown
significantly over the years and
CamTran has been there every step
of the way. CamTran's involvement
continues to grow, too, with the
agency now transporting 11-13
busloads of people to each event.
A roster is sent ahead of time
to event organizers, who prepare
the food boxes; event participants
receive 30-40 pounds of fresh
CamTran works with Produce for People volunteers to
produce and food. Upon arrival,
ensure that beneficiaries receive 30-40 pounds of fresh
CamTran bus operators collect the
food each month.

KANSAS CITY CONTINUED FROM PAGE 16
an urban technology company-but, as
the online publication Wired put it, "it
flopped."
Despite some characterizations calling the Bridj pilot an expensive flop,
KCATA contends it was invaluable in
helping the agency craft a better program, which was built with a strong
core service for persons with disabilities-something Bridj did not offer-and
builds out to provide fast, affordable
rides for everyone.
As KCATA President/Chief Executive
Officer Robbie Makinen said, Bridj was a
great pilot program because "it allowed
us to look at public transportation in a
whole new way and capture folks who

normally wouldn't ride public transit. It
allowed us to adapt the program to fit
our needs here in Kansas City, where we
are spread out across numerous municipalities and county and state lines. By
adding up the lessons learned, we ended
up putting together our brand of paratransit on-demand. Our pilot with Bridj
wasn't a failure. It was a bridge to freedom: RideKC Freedom On-Demand."
Without its experience with Bridj,
KCATA would not have an on-demand
solution that has reduced the per-trip
cost of paratransit service by 40 percent
while increasing accessibility to public
transportation for those customers who
need it most.


http://www.ltd.org/service-animals http://www.ltd.org/service-animals

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9

Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 1
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 2
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 3
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 4
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 5
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 6
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 7
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 8
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 9
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 10
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 11
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 12
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 13
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 14
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 15
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 16
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 17
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 18
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 19
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 20
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 21
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 22
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 23
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 24
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 25
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 26
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 27
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 28
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