The Chicago Transit Board this morning approved the purchase of at least 300 clean diesel, forty-foot buses from Nova Bus. The $148 million contract contains an option to purchase an additional 150 buses.
The new buses will replace CTA’s existing fleet of 484 Nova LFS buses, which entered into service between 2000-2002. Delivery of the prototype model is expected in December, with full-production expected to begin in February 2014.
Nova Bus has made several changes to their LFS bus model since CTA’s original order over twelve years ago. Most significantly, an updated engine placement eliminates the awkward interior layout at the rear of the bus. Unlike the current Nova models, the new buses will not contain any rear-facing seats. CTA explicitly prohibited rear-facing seats during the procurement process.
The purchase is part of CTA’s bus modernization plan, which also includes the overhaul of 1,030 existing buses.
The CTA still plans to award a separate contract for the purchase of up to 150 new articulated clean diesel and hybrid buses. The CTA is also currently in the process of receiving an order of 100 articulated buses from New Flyer.
Separately, the CTA board also today authorized the sale of the agency’s former Archer Bus Garage. The property, which was decommissioned in 2010 following service cuts, was sold to First American Properties LLC for $1.6 million as part of a competitive bidding process.