Princeton University in New Jersey last week launched an
extensively modified campus bus system that covers more routes, offers extended
hours and features more sheltered bus stops. The system also features a new
contractor, First Transit, which signed a five-year contract with the
Although some complaints have been lodged about bus drivers
still needing to become familiar with the routes, Kim Jackson, director of
Parking and Transportation Services, said the launch has been “very well
received by the university community.”
Many of the changes in the bus program are geared to meet
the needs of graduate students. The new TigerTransit system replaces three
lines with five routes that include coverage of an off-campus graduate housing
facility that had petitioned for shuttle bus service.
Jackson said the university now operates 13 buses and one
14-passenger van during the day and three 14-passenger vans during late-night
Although currently operating diesel buses, the shuttle
program will phase in a new fleet of 30-foot low-floor buses that run on B20
biodiesel fuel and are equipped with bike racks and GPS tracking. The new buses
are expected to be in service by the fall of 2009.
The upgrade of the bus system is part of Princeton’s
Sustainability Plan and is expected to help reduce by 10 percent the number of
students, faculty and staff commuting to campus by car by 2020.
Other features of the new bus program include better
connections with New Jersey Transit and other local transportation providers,
enhanced service to local shopping centers and an improved on-demand service.