LADOT rolls out new MCI CNG buses
On Monday Los Angeles residents will begin boarding the first of Los Angeles Department of Transportation’s (LADOT) MCI Commuter Coaches powered by CNG.
The MCI CNG-equipped Commuter Coaches will replace a majority of the 95 older, heavy-duty diesel buses that now carry Commuter Express passengers. Features on the new MCI Commuter Coaches include plush upholstered forward facing seats, individual overhead reading lights and personal airflow controls and performance features such as an advanced multiplexing system for simplified diagnostics, a driver-centric dash for easy interfacing and a SmartWave® tire pressure monitoring system.
Each 40-foot coach will be wheelchair-lift equipped and feature MCI’s Cummins ISL G 8.9 liter, 320hp engine, meeting 2010 U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and California’s California Air Resource Board (CARB) standards.
LADOT received more than $48 million in FTA grant funding for 79 of the 95 vehicles, or about 72 percent of the nearly $67 million cost.
The CNG coaches will be the first MCI models in LADOT’s fleet. Each of the new LADOT coaches will seat 49 passengers on the City’s Commuter Express system that connects outlying suburban districts with Downtown Los Angeles and other employment centers including Century City, Westwood, LAX, El Segundo, Pasadena, Glendale, Burbank and Encino.
LADOT launched its Commuter Express program in 1985, beginning with a single route carrying passengers between a city-leased park and ride lot in Encino and downtown Los Angeles. Today, the service has 13 routes operating throughout Los Angeles County during the weekday morning and afternoon peak commuting hours. The service has an annual ridership of more than two million with an estimated daily ridership of 8,400. LADOT currently operates the second largest fleet in Los Angeles County next to the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LACMTA). LADOT’s transit fleet consists of nearly 400 vehicles, which operate over 800,000 revenue