Environmental Protection

DC Transit Agency Orders Low-Emission Buses

Metro, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, recently awarded a contract for as many as 654 new buses to NABI, LLC, which will build them in Anniston, Ala.

As many as 654 new transit buses, either 42-foot or 60-foot models, will be added to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority's fleet beginning in June 2014. They are low-floor buses, so passengers will board and ride at the same level as the curb, and they'll emit 80 percent less particulate matter and 96 percent less NOx than the 1997 model-year buses they will replace, according to Metro’s announcement of the contract awarded to NABI, LLC. It will build the buses in Anniston, Ala.

The initial batch of 85 buses will cost around $60 million, including spare parts and training, and they will be 42-foot models equipped with diesel-electric hybrid engines. Metro has the option of choosing diesel-electric hybrid buses or compressed natural gas buses.

"This contract award will allow us to replace older, less efficient buses and advances our commitment to reducing emissions and improving fuel economy for years to come," said Richard Sarles, Metro General Manager and CEO. "Refreshing the fleet also enables us to maintain existing levels of service while providing added customer benefits such as low-floor boarding, which is not only more convenient, but faster in terms of boarding and exit times."

NABI is a subsidiary of New Flyer Industries Inc. Paul Soubry, president and CEO of New Flyer, said in a statement, "We are thrilled about our recent acquisition of NABI, and this award reinforces the opportunity we have to provide a broader product and support offering and create better value for our customers. WMATA operates both New Flyer and NABI buses and collectively we have delivered 1,046 buses to WMATA since 1995. We are very impressed with NABI products and personnel and compliment them on this contract award from WMATA."

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