Building on this previous post, it looks like COTA is moving forward with plans to procure new articulated buses. If they get them, the buses should help to relieve a little overcrowding and save a little gas money.
Saturday, August 2, 2008 2:54 AMTHE COLUMBUS DISPATCH
Super-long, environmentally friendly buses powered by a combination of electricity and diesel are in the Central Ohio Transit Authority’s future.
COTA is seeking $5.7 million through a federal grant to purchase six articulated hybrid buses.
“In my view, it is the way COTA will be going in the future,” said William Lhota, COTA president and chief executive officer.
Each bus is 62 feet long, bends in the middle and holds about 100 riders.
It runs on electric batteries and switches over to a diesel engine.
The buses don’t idle, Lhota said. Idling is a major source of pollution and fuel waste.
“Generally, particularly in congested Downtown areas, you are running on battery power, so you are not using the diesel engine as much as you would on a diesel bus,” he said.
COTA has no articulated or hybrid buses in its fleet of about 260 fixed-route buses. The authority’s biggest buses are 40 feet long, the maximum allowed on Columbus streets. COTA is working with Columbus officials to change the city code to allow the longer buses.