Public transportation is a vital component that every community and economy thrive from and exactly why our Department of Planning and Transportation is constantly working hard to improve and enhance our local transit system in Rockland County.
This summer I’m proud to let residents we have new County TOR buses out on the roadways. The Transportation Department purchased 20 new buses, twelve of which are in the process of entering TOR service and the remaining eight expected to enter the fleet this summer.
The new buses were part of a scheduled purchase program which began several years ago. The vehicles are fueled with Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel, meet U.S. EPA Clean Air Act requirements, and have advanced emission control technologies.
The new buses include a low-floor design and kneeling feature for easy boarding, along with front door wheelchair access ramps; front, curbside and street-side destination signage and an automated voice annunciation system for stop announcements; “stop request” signal buttons and pull cords; state-of-the-art wheeled mobility device securement systems; electronic fareboxes; front and rear exit doors; and bicycle racks. The buses also include several safety features, including onboard cameras; easy-clean seat inserts; thermoplastic, antimicrobial straphangers; and air purification systems.
The Department has previously purchased 22 hybrid-electric buses and was among the first in the region to integrate hybrids into municipal bus service in 2009. TOR, like other transit agencies in New York State, is in the process of adjusting future purchasing to include electric vehicles and is also working on securing the analyses that will be needed to determine the infrastructure, equipment, facility, and fleet expansion needs that an electric transit service will require, and on establishing a facility to support an electric bus fleet.
The department is also working on identifying locations for new bus shelters and launching a new Bus Shelter Solar Lighting campaign. Under that campaign, solar lights will be installed at bus stop shelters throughout the county, enhancing safety and transportation at night for riders.
Let’s not forget, throughout the pandemic our transportation employees worked hard to provide a full schedule of bus service for the families and essential workers relying on the services.
Thank you to our transportation employees who are always going above and beyond to improve service for residents. Your work does not go unnoticed. As for those who utilize our local transit, I encourage you to head to our website to learn more about our service options: http://rocklandgov.com/