New transit buses for several northern communities

Prince George will be receiving three new transit buses next month.

The 35-foot medium duty Vicinity buses will help better meet the transit needs of the communities they serve as they perform better and have enhanced safety features, according to BC Transit.

Each 35-foot Vicinity bus can seat 30 passengers with room for another 24 standees, while the 30-foot bus has seating for 24, with room for an additional 20 standing passengers. Both have space for two mobility aids. The new buses are equipped with two doors for more efficient operation and easier access on and off the bus by customers. The costs for the Vicinity buses are $319,000 (30-foot) and $347,000 (35-foot).

“Each time a new bus is introduced into a transit system, we are improving the way in which we are connecting people to their communities,” said Erinn Pinkerton, BC Transit’s Interim President and Chief Executive Officer, in a news release. “Whether we are expanding a fleet or replacing a bus with a newer model, these new buses will greatly impact the customer experience.”

ARBOC Spirit of Mobility are also being added to several communities in the North with Fort St. John receiving five of the buses, Hazelton two, and Smithers three.

The ARBOC buses have between 17 and 23 seats depending on the configuration. The buses are accessible as it is a low floor bus with kneeling capability. It is flexible in its design, allowing for up to four wheelchairs. Gradual sloped floor, theatre style seating provides a better view for passengers traveling on the bus. BC Transit has approximately 300 ARBOC buses in its fleet across the province. Each bus will cost approximately $240,000.