Columbia in line for five new city buses

Friday, April 10, 2009 | 12:01 a.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — Five new buses for public transportation are on their way to Columbia, pending a final vote of the City Council on April 20.

The city has secured $1.74 million in federal stimulus money to pay for the 40-foot low-floor buses manufactured by Gillig.

Gillig supplied the two newest buses in Columbia’s fleet. The additional buses will be equipped with the same amenities bus riders have become accustomed to, including bike racks on the front of the buses, security cameras and fare boxes, city Transportation Manager Ken Koopmans said.

Koopmans said Columbia has long been in line to receive the federal grant.

“We have a population of more than 50,000 and less than 200,000,” Koopmans said. “It’s based on a formula.”

Because many cities are receiving similar grants, Koopmans predicts Gillig will be backed up with bus orders. He expects Columbians will have to wait at least 12 to 14 months before the new buses arrive.

“We’re already in their production schedule,” Koopmans said. “The fact that we are a repeat customer helped.”

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Charles Dudley Jr April 10, 2009 | 5:06 a.m.

Great job Columbia Transit!

It will be nice seeing 5 of the older 40 footers retired or moved to Campus Duty. Some of the 40 footers on Campus are in pretty bad shape so we could see a trade around which is great!

Now we need some new 30 footers to replace the older wore out ones. Especially those older tall ones that look fugly.

If you want to know how bad some of the city streets are in just ride around on a city bus sometime. Those streets are bumpy I can attest too.

(Report Comment)
Rational Thought April 10, 2009 | 11:34 a.m.

HEY!! A better idea, have the city take the 1.74 million and give it to the 5 people in columbia who ride buses.

Those 5 people then can buy a car, a house and then we can get 5 empty buses off the road so there's more room for those 20 people who ride bikes!

I'm confused, how does buying 5 buses stimulate the economy? esp if it's adding to the expense of maintaning 5 more buses.

Why should the city have a bus service that can't substain it's self? If a business tries to sell product that won't sell, they remove it from inventory and replace it with something that does sell, why shouldn't it be different with the city?

Short of the the company which sells the buses (a company outside of Missori) there's no stimulas effect to this! Now the city has 5 more buses to keep running, Oh I guess I forgot that in buying 5 buses they will have to hire 5 more drivers but that expense isn't covered with the "Stimulas" funds so this little "gift" this actually going to cost the city money.

(Report Comment)
Charles Dudley Jr April 11, 2009 | 3:41 a.m.

Rational Thought obviously your rational thoughts are not very rational by your postings nor do you realize those 5 buses will be "replacing" 5 older buses which will be taken out of service or parked and only used when needed in the future. If a bus is parked and only in "stand by duty" there is no maintenance needed.

It is also obvious by your lack of rational thoughts that you have no idea how the peek and non peek times of the city bus schedule works nor do you understand just how the population of this city that use the city buses "get about" this city either.

You and others come here and cry about the city buses being empty but do you yourself and others still drive your car(s) to work?

Some people cannot afford a car thus they ride the bus.

I know people who do both as in ride the bus and park their cars but only use their car when the bus in not convenient.

(Report Comment)

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