Amelia express route to receive new buses

CTC given six buses by Dayton

Riders on the Clermont Transportation Connection’s Amelia Express route will be glad to know they will soon have an added luxury for their trip to and from downtown Cincinnati. A seat.

The express line has seen a dramatic increase in ridership since it began and according to CTC director Ben Capelle the route has been standing room only for some time and will be until six 40-foot buses enter service in the coming months.

The 8-year-old diesel buses are being given to the CTC by Dayton’s Regional Transit Authority and range in mileage from 432,000 miles to 470,000 miles.

“Dayton is being pretty nice to us,” Capelle said. “These buses are in much better shape than a used bus usually is. Most transit authorities don’t get rid of their buses until they have more than 500,000 miles and are 15 years old. Buses like that brand new will cost $400,000.”

Capelle said using larger buses is cheaper than adding more drivers to the route.

The only cost to Clermont County will come from all new tires, graphics, and radios.

“The graphics will be done as cheaply as possible because we will want to replace these as soon as possible,” Capelle said.

Capelle said the buses will fill a high priority need for the CTC until they are able to secure grant funding for new buses.

The buses will be given a safety inspection when they are received. Capelle said each bus maintained by the county receives a 50 to 60 point inspection each time it receives maintenance.

“We’ll go over them with a fine tooth comb,” Capelle said. “Dayton has the same safety standards as we do, but we haven’t seen theses buses before so we want to get a good look at them.”

Capelle said most CTC drivers are licensed to drive the longer buses but they will receive additional training on the buses before handling the Amelia route.

“We’ll do a vast amount of driver training,” Capelle said.

Clermont County Administrator Dave Spinney said Dayton purchased the buses with a federal grant which requires documentation of the buses until 500,000 miles, so the CTC will need file the appropriate paperwork. The buses will enter service after approval of the transition by the Federal Transportation Administration.

“We are very, very thankful to Dayton and to the Commissioners for letting us do this,” Capelle said.