On Oct. 14, the NJ Transit board of directors approved the purchase of 65 vehicles — including minibuses and heavy-duty buses — that will be used to provide critical transportation services to senior citizens and residents with disabilities in rural and small urban areas throughout the state.
Funding for more than half of the vehicles is being provided through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).
“The transit options provided through local transportation programs enable thousands of residents to travel more easily around the state,” said Transportation Commissioner and NJ Transt Board Chairman Stephen Dilts. “And everyone will be traveling easier, thanks to the DOT’s record-setting $25 million boost to this year’s municipal aid program that helps communities repair and improve local roads. With both new vehicles for local transportation services and better roads, residents throughout New Jersey will enjoy a smoother, safer transportation system.”
“Through the procurement of these vehicles, we will continue to provide mobility for many New Jersey residents in rural areas, including people with disabilities and senior citizens,” said NJ Transit Executive Director Richard Sarles.
NJ Transit invited eligible counties to submit requests for vehicles through the program. In all, the new vehicles will be distributed to organizations in 16 counties.
The Board authorized two separate contracts for the purchase of the vehicles:
- $1.5 million contract with Starcraft Division of Forest River/Jersey Shore Bus Sales of Toms River, for the purchase of 26 minibuses.
- $4.3 million contract with American Bus of Trenton, for the purchase of 10 hybrid minibuses and 22 heavy-duty cutaway buses, with an option for an additional seven buses.
Funding for 37 vehicles is being provided through ARRA, with additional funding in some counties being provided through other federal grant programs, including Section 5309, 5310 and Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ).