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Does Gillig even bid? It was always - like Crown Coach, a West Coast company with little east coast distribution.

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1 minute ago, Deucey said:

Does Gillig even bid? It was always - like Crown Coach, a West Coast company with little east coast distribution.

Quire a few east coast companies have Gilligs. DASH Alexandria, BAT, DART, Pittsburgh, Prince George's county The Bus, Gainsville, MARTA, CDTA, MVRTA, RIPTA,  and dozens upon dozens of smaller transit compnies (GoRaleigh, etc.).

And yes, iirc Gillig doesn't bid.

----

Anyway, I heard the old excuse was that Gillig buses weren't built well enough to handle the crummy NYC streets. Lately, the newest reason I've been hearing is that Gillig doesn't like to deal with these massive couple-hundred bus orders that the MTA typically places.

Just as well though, this seems to gradually be changing, especially as incdicated by the MARTA BRT order

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1 hour ago, Orion6025 said:

Quire a few east coast companies have Gilligs. DASH Alexandria, BAT, DART, Pittsburgh, Prince George's county The Bus, Gainsville, MARTA, CDTA, MVRTA, RIPTA,  and dozens upon dozens of smaller transit compnies (GoRaleigh, etc.).

And yes, iirc Gillig doesn't bid.

----

Anyway, I heard the old excuse was that Gillig buses weren't built well enough to handle the crummy NYC streets. Lately, the newest reason I've been hearing is that Gillig doesn't like to deal with these massive couple-hundred bus orders that the MTA typically places.

Just as well though, this seems to gradually be changing, especially as incdicated by the MARTA BRT order

That's a change for Gillig, since you'd see their Phantoms everywhere until you got east of St Louis.

But that new ownership might be feeling bullish since Orion and NABI disappeared.

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Gillig seems to shy away from orders from Major cities, they can run here, if they survived the shaker table test they can survive NYC streets.

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1 hour ago, trainfan22 said:

Gillig seems to shy away from orders from Major cities, they can run here, if they survived the shaker table test they can survive NYC streets.

I dont see why Gilligs wouldn't be able to survive NYC streets other big cites have them and run just fine.

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5 hours ago, doglover44 said:

I dont see why Gilligs wouldn't be able to survive NYC streets other big cites have them and run just fine.

That's all what they run down here in Brevard Country (FL), and seems like other transit systems down here as well.

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Pittsburgh's PAT (Port Authority Transit) is probably the biggest Gillig buyer, except for the Artics everything is a standard Gillig Low-Floor. Pittsburgh streets are NYC condition, but with serious hills as well, and Pittsburgh East Side bus routes carries some serious Crushloads of people all day long. Pittsburgh is probably the best case-study for NYC as far as Gilligs. Early on 2002-2004 (52, 53 and 54 -series) Gilligs were the WORST manufactured seriously could not handle Pittsburgh streets and crushloads well, and they aged horribly. But as time went on starting with the 2005-2006 series (I guess PAT forced) you could start to see a better standard low floor product. PAT just received 100 (I think) 2017 series Standard Low Floors, compare them to the 2002-2004 batch, a serious comeuppance.  They now fully handle Pittsburgh streets and crushloads, much more reliable a bus, and they feel much heavier now than back in 2002-2004. 

Gillig will probably never handle cities much bigger than Pittsburgh, Seattle, Minneapolis who orders 100-150 buses at a time... MTA with its 600-700 bus orders would overwhelm Gillig. I don't think Gillig would even bother with SEPTA, CTA, or DC METRO

Edited by Lennyj17

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Gillig wants nothing to do with NYMTA or NJ Transit. They don't look at them as a necessity like New Flyer or Nova Bus does. They're using the same philosophy like NABI did, as they are comfortable with the idea that they don't need MTA or NJ Transit orders to stay afloat.

They're doing just fine elsewhere, as they're getting lots and lots of orders from other agencies, including King County Metro, MARTA, Centro and many others.

Edited by Cait Sith

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8 hours ago, Lennyj17 said:

Pittsburgh's PAT (Port Authority Transit) is probably the biggest Gillig buyer, except for the Artics everything is a standard Gillig Low-Floor. Pittsburgh streets are NYC condition, but with serious hills as well, and Pittsburgh East Side bus routes carries some serious Crushloads of people all day long. Pittsburgh is probably the best case-study for NYC as far as Gilligs. Early on 2002-2004 (52, 53 and 54 -series) Gilligs were the WORST manufactured seriously could not handle Pittsburgh streets and crushloads well, and they aged horribly. But as time went on starting with the 2005-2006 series (I guess PAT forced) you could start to see a better standard low floor product. PAT just received 100 (I think) 2017 series Standard Low Floors, compare them to the 2002-2004 batch, a serious comeuppance.  They now fully handle Pittsburgh streets and crushloads, much more reliable a bus, and they feel much heavier now than back in 2002-2004. 

Gillig will probably never handle cities much bigger than Pittsburgh, Seattle, Minneapolis who orders 100-150 buses at a time... MTA with its 600-700 bus orders would overwhelm Gillig. I don't think Gillig would even bother with SEPTA, CTA, or DC METRO

Very interesting didn't know any of this !

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On 3/28/2018 at 6:50 PM, trainfan22 said:

Gillig seems to shy away from orders from Major cities, they can run here, if they survived the shaker table test they can survive NYC streets.

Sun Tran in Tucson is Gillig.

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Just rename the company to giggity at least it will sound cool.

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Posted (edited)

A number of 30-foot (3---) and 40-foot (4----/4----H/5----/5----H) CDTA routes are Gilligs. The 60-foot buses are New Flyers used on the 905, 12 and 1 due to their near-to-past-million-person annual ridership.

Edited by MassTransitHonchkrow
forgot to consider the bus that runs on Washington Avenue in Albany County.

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, MassTransitHonchkrow said:

A number of 30-foot (3---) and 40-foot (4----/4----H/5----/5----H) CDTA routes are Gilligs. The 60-foot buses are New Flyers used on the 905, 12 and 1 due to their near-to-past-million-person annual ridership.

Came out of hibernation after 3+ years, browsing around, and see this, so had to respond.  A more detailed explanation will follow.

As to the above quote:

CDTA is hardly a "heavy-transit reliant" area, so thus it fits into the Gillig "market".  Looked through the route schedules, and even the Washington Av "high-use" (really?) route is like most of the others: 35-ish minute run one-way, over multiple MILES. Didn't really drill into everything, but after checking three or four schedules got a good picture: NOT an MTA-style high-use/high-frequency TA.

Plain and simple, Gillig is geared towards those areas where the public transit thought is, "Yeah, we should at least do something in terms of buses" (like NICE), with the caveat of "As long as it doesn't cost us a lot of money." [Cuomo must be proud his stompin'-grounds is so frugal.]

Case(s) in point: Gillig has been producing their "rental car shuttles" out in sunny California's Bay Area since they decided to scrap their school bus business.  Major TAs in California (no less) have avoided them like the plague:

--LACMTA (Los Angeles) even before their 'green' decision (CNG, etc.) never used Gilligs;

--MUNI (San Francisco) has practically always used New Flyers, and finally DID actually place Gillig orders. (Well, when you gotta spend city resources on poop-patrol and replacing dangerous falling streetlights due to human, not dog, peeing, you gotta cut somewhere.);

--San Diego continues to use New Flyers;

--Oakland even got that waiver so they could buy Van Hools, even though Gillig was right in their back yard.

ALL of those Gillig buses that are roaming around Florida, Ohio, Connecticut, and Albany did the Route 66-style "see America" journey from the Bay Area to their final destination, too. And it's quite surprising, when you look at RFP/RFQ/Purchase Contracts for those areas (across country), there isn't some significant 'extra' charge rolled in for that cross-country journey [it's there--remember nothing is free].

Case in point: SMART (Suburban Detroit) new Gillig buses totalled out over $50,000 per bus higher than DDOT (City of Detroit) 40-footers from New Flyer in Minnesota. DDOT had their own Purchase Order, SMART "piggy-backed" off Akron, Ohio. DDOT beats the snot, piss and crap out of their buses, and doesn't retire them until around 14-15 years; SMART was out begging that their Gilligs were falling apart/needed to be replaced after only 12 years, yet does 1/3 of the true transit "work" of DDOT.

I'll elaborate more later, but recall how I said Gillig was building their "rental car shuttles"? Well, that's how their low-floor was born. Hertz was buying tons of Gilligs and complained that those steps in the Phantoms were a PITA with their airport customers. Voila! The Gillig Advantage was born (low-floor!), and hasn't seen any real change in almost 20 years.

LACMTA does all CNGs, Gillig said no.  Other TAs wanted artics, Gillig said no.

Not much call for artics or "being green" and saving the planet for the rental car shuttles, I guess.

But for the also-ran TAs looking for "cheap" transportation, right up their street.

Edited by DetSMART45
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4 minutes ago, DetSMART45 said:

Came out of hibernation after 3+ years, browsing around, and see this, so had to respond.  A more detailed explanation will follow.

As to the above quote:

CDTA is hardly a "heavy-transit reliant" area, so thus it fits into the Gillig "market".  Looked through the route schedules, and even the Washington Av "high-use" (really?) route is like most of the others: 35-ish minute run one-way, over multiple MILES. Didn't really drill into everything, but after checking three or four schedules got a good picture: NOT an MTA-style high-use/high-frequency TA.

Plain and simple, Gillig is geared towards those areas where the public transit thought is, "Yeah, we should at least do something in terms of buses" (like NICE), with the caveat of "As long as it doesn't cost us a lot of money." [Cuomo must be proud his stompin'-grounds is so frugal.]

Case(s) in point: Gillig has been producing their "rental car shuttles" out in sunny California's Bay Area since they decided to scrap their school bus business.  Major TAs in California (no less) have avoided them like the plague:

--LACMTA (Los Angeles) even before their 'green' decision (CNG, etc.) never used Gilligs;

--MUNI (San Francisco) has practically always used New Flyers, and finally DID actually place Gillig orders. (Well, when you gotta spend city resources on poop-patrol and replacing dangerous falling streetlights due to human, not dog, peeing, you gotta cut somewhere.);

--San Diego continues to use New Flyers;

--Oakland even got that waiver so they could buy Van Hools, even though Gillig was right in their back yard.

ALL of those Gillig buses that are roaming around Florida, Ohio, Connecticut, and Albany did the Route 66-style "see America" journey from the Bay Area to their final destination, too. And it's quite surprising, when you look at RFP/RFQ/Purchase Contracts for those areas (across country), there isn't some significant 'extra' charge rolled in for that cross-country journey [it's there--remember nothing is free].

Case in point: SMART (Suburban Detroit) new Gillig buses totalled out over $50,000 per bus higher than DDOT (City of Detroit) 40-footers from New Flyer in Minnesota. DDOT had their own Purchase Order, SMART "piggy-backed" off Akron, Ohio. DDOT beats the snot, piss and crap out of their buses, and doesn't retire them until around 14-15 years; SMART was out begging that their Gilligs were falling apart/needed to be replaced after only 12 years, yet does 1/3 of the true transit "work" of DDOT.

I'll elaborate more later, but recall how I said Gillig was building their "rental car shuttles"? Well, that's how their low-floor was born. Hertz was buying tons of Gilligs and complained that those steps in the Phantoms were a PITA with their airport customers. Voila! The Gillig Advantage was born (low-floor!), and hasn't seen any real change in almost 20 years.

LACMTA does all CNGs, Gillig said no.  Other TAs wanted artics, Gillig said no.

Not much call for artics or "being green" and saving the planet for the rental car shuttles, I guess.

Or the also-ran TAs looking for "cheap" transportation.

I think one of the closest to high-demand systems with Gilligs may be RIPTA.

Of course, that's cheating, given that RIPTA pretty much covers the entire state of Rhode Island...

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4 minutes ago, Lex said:

I think one of the closest to high-demand systems with Gilligs may be RIPTA.

Of course, that's cheating, given that RIPTA pretty much covers the entire state of Rhode Island...

Here's the real test:

Go through the FTA filings, and drill-into all of the different TAs.

"Major" TAs will be using New Flyers, Novas, NABIs, Orions.

Any of them -- a significant portion of their fleet -- will NOT have Gilligs as part of them.

[Cleveland decided to take a chance, had a PO, and told Gillig to shut it down because of the buses basically falling apart after delivery.]

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Something else that bothers me about Gillig is the company's implicit refusal to expand beyond one facility. Then again, given that Gillig is so focused on specific markets rather than future-proofing...

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Posted (edited)
12 hours ago, DetSMART45 said:

Here's the real test:

Go through the FTA filings, and drill-into all of the different TAs.

"Major" TAs will be using New Flyers, Novas, NABIs, Orions.

Any of them -- a significant portion of their fleet -- will NOT have Gilligs as part of them.

[Cleveland decided to take a chance, had a PO, and told Gillig to shut it down because of the buses basically falling apart after delivery.]

Gillig bids on very few large-city orders.  Their business model for a long time has been to compete for smaller and medium-sized orders that the big guys often overlook in their desire to win big-city orders.  It's worked for them.

I also believe that it can be deceiving to look at any city and make judgments about bus models based on a limited sample size.  The RTS was the most indestructible bus since the GM Old Look, yet some cities had difficulty keeping theirs on the road to even meet the FTA 12-year requirement.  I've also ridden on Gilligs that are 15 years old and rode just fine.  Quality of maintenance counts for a lot.  

Edited by RailBus63

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3 hours ago, Lex said:

Something else that bothers me about Gillig is the company's implicit refusal to expand beyond one facility. Then again, given that Gillig is so focused on specific markets rather than future-proofing...

Within the last few years, they moved into a slightly larger facility, but what really puzzles me is how after 20-some years of getting business clear across the country, never decided to open a manufacturing facility to serve it. They get those "piggy-back" orders where maybe a mid-size TA wants 25 buses, but they're really being divvied up amongst small TAs as well. I think SMART actually got two or three DEs (hybrids) like that through TANK (Kentucky) when they had an order. COTA (Columbus, OH) made it plain that they drove their buses clear across country in one of their press releases for new buses hitting the streets. Then there's all those rental car airport locations scattered everywhere to serve as well.

After SMART begged for a higher tax rate in 2014 to replace the 2001/2002s, even their piggy-back order with Akron took 2 years (and that order went out the morning after voting day in August 2014) to start rolling in. It didn't take even a year for those 2016 buses to bottom-out in the nasty curbside potholes, have screws missing from around the windows (rattling), the rear doors whistling from the wind at speed, and one had actually started a roof crack with water dripping during a rainstorm through the lighting rail. (They also order all the new buses with sealed "BRT" windows, so if something malfunctions with the HVAC, bus is sidelined. Also since the HVAC is rear-mounted, it's a lot noisier than DDOT's Xcelsiors with roof-mounts.)

They also just started rolling their 2018s out around February. One I was on yesterday bottomed out and popped us all out of our seats up top in the back, and the seats were rattling when unoccupied. [And SMART is absolutely BEGGING people to come and be mechanics.]

Not looking good.

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1 minute ago, RailBus63 said:

Gillig bids on very few large-city orders.  Their business model for a long time has been to compete for smaller and medium-sized orders that the big guys often overlook in their desire to win big-city orders.  It's worked for them.

I also believe that it can be deceiving to look at any city and make judgments about bus models based on a limited sample size.  The RTS was the most indestructible bus since the GM Old Look, yet some cities had difficulty keeping theirs on the road to even meet the FTA 12-year requirement.  I've also ridden on Gilligs that are 15 years old and rode just fine.  Quality of maintenance counts for a lot.  

Yeah I know what you're saying, because maintenance is really key across all bus models. But like the MTA, DDOT used to do practically NOTHING for decades in terms of maintenance (whether standard PM or extended). And the Old Looks/New Looks/GM Classics/MCI Classics/Neoplan artics were all run into the absolute ground (and then some more) before being relegated to the scrap heap, all with well more than 12 years on them. A few colorful examples come to mind: 1] GM RTS tooling on a route with the kneeler busted, going ~35 mph between stops. 2] Numerous Nova RTS-06s with absolute clouds (reminiscent of the old pre-clean diesel days) whooshing on takeoffs. 3] New Flyer D40HF sent out with rear window missing, plastic over it (yeah just like ya do when someone busts out your car window). 4] Too many to mention with battlescars from sideswipes, corner cuts, bumpercaps missing, spiderwebbed windows from gunshots. 5] MCI Classic with seat actually on the floor (off the mount), and two days later same bus, same situation -- but out servin' the peeps. 6] Neoplan artic running with rear door open and spewing clouds even after takeoff. After first sighting of that one, saw it 2x more about 4 hours later doing the same.

Currently, I think all of the 75 2003 New Flyer D40LF DD50s are awaiting scrapping. They endured at least 11 years of the type of maintenance discussed above. And made it to a ripe old age of 15. SMART's 2001 35-foot Gilligs, with far less "wear-and-tear" barely made it to 14, and for the vast majority of their life had premium care.

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, DetSMART45 said:

75 2003 New Flyer D40LF DD50s 

Kinda off topic but how many more years will DDOT have the 2005 D40LF around for? I love those things and would love to see one before they retire...

Edited by Orion6025
Added in the 2005 part. Couldnt care less abt thr 2009-2010s lol

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13 hours ago, DetSMART45 said:

Yeah I know what you're saying, because maintenance is really key across all bus models. But like the MTA, DDOT used to do practically NOTHING for decades in terms of maintenance (whether standard PM or extended). And the Old Looks/New Looks/GM Classics/MCI Classics/Neoplan artics were all run into the absolute ground (and then some more) before being relegated to the scrap heap, all with well more than 12 years on them. A few colorful examples come to mind: 1] GM RTS tooling on a route with the kneeler busted, going ~35 mph between stops. 2] Numerous Nova RTS-06s with absolute clouds (reminiscent of the old pre-clean diesel days) whooshing on takeoffs. 3] New Flyer D40HF sent out with rear window missing, plastic over it (yeah just like ya do when someone busts out your car window). 4] Too many to mention with battlescars from sideswipes, corner cuts, bumpercaps missing, spiderwebbed windows from gunshots. 5] MCI Classic with seat actually on the floor (off the mount), and two days later same bus, same situation -- but out servin' the peeps. 6] Neoplan artic running with rear door open and spewing clouds even after takeoff. After first sighting of that one, saw it 2x more about 4 hours later doing the same.

Currently, I think all of the 75 2003 New Flyer D40LF DD50s are awaiting scrapping. They endured at least 11 years of the type of maintenance discussed above. And made it to a ripe old age of 15. SMART's 2001 35-foot Gilligs, with far less "wear-and-tear" barely made it to 14, and for the vast majority of their life had premium care.

And the amazing thing is, being a West Coaster til I was 33, my school district was running 1960s Gillig stick shifts until ~2003 - and I graduated in 98.

Sac Regional Transit, YoloBus, Stockton-San Joaquin (SMART back then) were running the Phantoms until the early aughts with minimal problems - doing better than the Orion V CNGs.

Even LAUSD still runs the Gillig Phantom school bus, and LADOT ran them for their shuttle routes until low floor became the norm.

But given how Gillig, and Crown Coach (RIP) never had the gumption to do more than exist and cater to systems where the busiest routes had 5k or fewer riders, not surprised that they can’t compete with the Chinese-backed firms and Euro imports like Van Hool.

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12 hours ago, Orion6025 said:

Kinda off topic but how many more years will DDOT have the 2005 D40LF around for? I love those things and would love to see one before they retire...

Now that the 2018 XD40s are rolling in (and more are coming), culling of the 2005s will continue. Operators are more accepting of the Xcelsiors than in the past, especially after the route renumbering. A bunch still insist on pulling a 2005 out over the others, purely because of the power (and no interlock on the front door).

The XD40s are now more of a "priority" on the "Connect 10" renumbered 24-hour routes, since almost all of them have been wrapped in the new livery, so those operators have had to adjust to running Xcelsiors over the old Flyers.

I think the 4100-series 2005s will probably make it to at least 2020 if not to 2021, because they are still the majority of the fleet.

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9 hours ago, Deucey said:

And the amazing thing is, being a West Coaster til I was 33, my school district was running 1960s Gillig stick shifts until ~2003 - and I graduated in 98.

Sac Regional Transit, YoloBus, Stockton-San Joaquin (SMART back then) were running the Phantoms until the early aughts with minimal problems - doing better than the Orion V CNGs.

Even LAUSD still runs the Gillig Phantom school bus, and LADOT ran them for their shuttle routes until low floor became the norm.

But given how Gillig, and Crown Coach (RIP) never had the gumption to do more than exist and cater to systems where the busiest routes had 5k or fewer riders, not surprised that they can’t compete with the Chinese-backed firms and Euro imports like Van Hool.

Even though I have plenty of disdain for Gillig, it's primarily due to the amount of TLC that has to be done to them throughout their lifetime. A small TA that is doing AM/PM Peak shuttles or "loop" routes (like HART), or limited 5 or 6 day service, Gillig could fit their needs for a "transit" bus. In those cases, Gilligs would be a much wiser choice than doing Champion cut-aways, especially with low-floor versus lifts.

Almost ALL of the SMART operators that have been around for awhile will tell you how cheap those Gilligs are. And many were flabbergasted when "the Board" went out and purchased more, given that DDOT was getting the Xcelsiors. (Many of these operators remember the Phantom days, but also the TMC RTSes, and a couple "seniors", the original GM RTSes SMART ran.)

Back in the old Phantom days, SMART mechanics had Gilligs and TMC RTSes to deal with. The old Flxibles and GM RTSes had already gone to the boneyard. Those TMCs did most of the weekday Peak workload, as well as the routes in/out of Downtown 7 days, and since they were built like brick outhouses, they required light to steady maintenance. So additional time could be spent to keeping the Phantoms up to snuff. [Also during those times, almost the entire fleet didn't have rear doors, so the lift was at the front. Even though the old GMs and Flxibles had back doors, those were only used for lift customers -- everyone had to exit through the front.]

Gillig Advantage low-floors were brought in beginning in 2001, and after the 2003 purchases, everything high-floor was toast and off the road. The old mechanic-crew still did a good job on them, up until around 2007/8, and then things started to fall apart. Keep this in mind: There is no such "overhaul" program like what MTA does, even given that Midwest Bus is "right up the road", and that's where MTA Flint (yeah, the bad-water city) has ALL of their fleet overhauled at. The only time new paintjobs come about is after an accident, as an example, and the transmission-swap happens when the bus has completely died. Everything else is done on a piecemeal basis along the way. So when a customer gets dripped-on and bills SMART for their drycleaning, bus gets checked for a roof leak, bandaged, and back on the road. After around 2015, the famous "blue duct tape" was the favored fix for anything "rattling" inside (especially the 'electrics' cabinet), busted window handles stayed busted, signal cords didn't get fixed, etc.

Keep this also in mind: Service levels didn't suddenly take a huge uptick during this time. Even after Detroit righted-itself after bankruptcy and restarted 24 hour, as well as adding service, SMART was running the same as always. SMART still has the stagnant 35,000-weekday systemwide (the same for a good decade), even as DDOT is now climbing back toward 100,000-weekday.

Now, had SMART ditched the Gilligs and went with D40LF New Flyers (or brought in the new XD40s from 2014), the mechanics could have "slid" a bit and reverted to DDOT's old ways of maintaining the fleet -- and nobody really would have been the wiser.

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On 4/15/2019 at 8:44 PM, DetSMART45 said:

Came out of hibernation after 3+ years, browsing around, and see this, so had to respond.  A more detailed explanation will follow.

As to the above quote:

CDTA is hardly a "heavy-transit reliant" area, so thus it fits into the Gillig "market".  Looked through the route schedules, and even the Washington Av "high-use" (really?) route is like most of the others: 35-ish minute run one-way, over multiple MILES. Didn't really drill into everything, but after checking three or four schedules got a good picture: NOT an MTA-style high-use/high-frequency TA.

Plain and simple, Gillig is geared towards those areas where the public transit thought is, "Yeah, we should at least do something in terms of buses" (like NICE), with the caveat of "As long as it doesn't cost us a lot of money." [Cuomo must be proud his stompin'-grounds is so frugal.]

Case(s) in point: Gillig has been producing their "rental car shuttles" out in sunny California's Bay Area since they decided to scrap their school bus business.  Major TAs in California (no less) have avoided them like the plague:

--LACMTA (Los Angeles) even before their 'green' decision (CNG, etc.) never used Gilligs;

--MUNI (San Francisco) has practically always used New Flyers, and finally DID actually place Gillig orders. (Well, when you gotta spend city resources on poop-patrol and replacing dangerous falling streetlights due to human, not dog, peeing, you gotta cut somewhere.);

--San Diego continues to use New Flyers;

--Oakland even got that waiver so they could buy Van Hools, even though Gillig was right in their back yard.

ALL of those Gillig buses that are roaming around Florida, Ohio, Connecticut, and Albany did the Route 66-style "see America" journey from the Bay Area to their final destination, too. And it's quite surprising, when you look at RFP/RFQ/Purchase Contracts for those areas (across country), there isn't some significant 'extra' charge rolled in for that cross-country journey [it's there--remember nothing is free].

Case in point: SMART (Suburban Detroit) new Gillig buses totalled out over $50,000 per bus higher than DDOT (City of Detroit) 40-footers from New Flyer in Minnesota. DDOT had their own Purchase Order, SMART "piggy-backed" off Akron, Ohio. DDOT beats the snot, piss and crap out of their buses, and doesn't retire them until around 14-15 years; SMART was out begging that their Gilligs were falling apart/needed to be replaced after only 12 years, yet does 1/3 of the true transit "work" of DDOT.

I'll elaborate more later, but recall how I said Gillig was building their "rental car shuttles"? Well, that's how their low-floor was born. Hertz was buying tons of Gilligs and complained that those steps in the Phantoms were a PITA with their airport customers. Voila! The Gillig Advantage was born (low-floor!), and hasn't seen any real change in almost 20 years.

LACMTA does all CNGs, Gillig said no.  Other TAs wanted artics, Gillig said no.

Not much call for artics or "being green" and saving the planet for the rental car shuttles, I guess.

But for the also-ran TAs looking for "cheap" transportation, right up their street.

See Bold for context

 

This explains why we have New Flyers up here. It seems they don't like building big. Thanks for the awesome insight and welcome back!

Also, NYC is set to run out of NG in the next six years. A fracking project that has the support of some tenant associations is actually being stalled. I'd have to look more into it, but it's based on this story. I think there's more sides to this story.

 

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