Here is the news release:
The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) Board of Directors approved a budget of $297 million today to purchase 550 new 40-foot transit buses fueledby compressed natural gas (CNG).
In taking the action, the Board reaffirmed its commitment to Metro’s long-term plan to ensure that all facilities and equipment are up-to-date and remain in a state of good repair.
“New buses will provide a safer, cleaner environment,” said Metro CEO Art Leahy.
The new buses will replace buses that are past 12 years of age and 500,000 miles. Those buses will reach their retirement age during fiscal years 2014 and 2015. Some 250 of the buses being replaced are older high-floor buses that are less suitable for ADA accessibility.
The bus procurement is part of Metro’s bus fleet replacement plans for fiscal years 2013-2015. Funding required for the buses is included in Metro’s adopted Long Range Plan and is eligible for bus and rail operation as well as capital expenditures, such as acquisition, labor, contingency and spare parts.
The new buses will be low-floor, CNG-fueled buses with an interior video surveillance system. Improved features called for in the solicitation include technological advancements and longer-life components.
The Board authorized the “best value” approach for the bus procurement in February, which allowed staff to proceed with solicitation of the replacement buses. The procurement contract will be awarded upon Board approval at a subsequent Board meeting later this year.