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ABC (Australia) - - CONTENTS - Left: A Volgren ar­tic­u­lated city bus, which will also fea­ture in Trans­port Can­berra liv­ery as part of a new or­der for the na­tion’s cap­i­tal.

We’ve gath­ered up all the key, hard-hit­ting Aus­tralasian and in­ter­na­tional bus and coach news to keep you in the loop.

A MA­JOR BUS OR­DER from Trans­port Can­berra ( TC) means Volgren has added 45 new work­ers to its Eagle Farm man­u­fac­tur­ing fa­cil­ity in Brisbane, as the mas­sive Aus­tralian-based bus-body man­u­fac­turer grows its pro­duc­tion vol­umes to suit, the com­pany an­nounced re­cently. Volgren won the TC con­tract late 2017.

This is in ad­di­tion to the 60 buses it will de­liver to Brisbane City Coun­cil in 2018 as part of its long-run­ning prime con­trac­tor agree­ment.

Peter Dale, chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer of Volgren, said staff in Brisbane are busy work­ing on the first of 20 low-floor rigid and 10

ar­tic­u­lated city buses to be de­liv­ered to the na­tional cap­i­tal by the end of Septem­ber.

“Queens­land is an im­por­tant part of our man­u­fac­tur­ing ca­pa­bil­ity and we’re proud that the fa­cil­ity is now pro­duc­ing buses not just for Brisbane, but for a crit­i­cal mar­ket in the ACT. It’s ex­cit­ing to see two full pro­duc­tion lines run­ning in Eagle Farm,” he said.

“Across our three man­u­fac­tur­ing sites in Mel­bourne, Perth and Brisbane we have the flex­i­bil­ity and ex­per­tise to com­fort­ably sat­isfy high de­liv­ery de­mands from op­er­a­tors all around the coun­try,” he added.

“As these re­quire­ments in­crease, our lean man­u­fac­tur­ing sys­tems al­low us to bring on new team mem­bers and quickly make sure that sup­ply meets de­mand.”

LO­CAL WIND­FALL

The Volgren CEO said the 45 highly skilled trades-based work­ers rep­re­sented an in­vest­ment of around $4 mil­lion into the lo­cal job mar­ket.

“For more than a decade we’ve part­nered with Brisbane City Coun­cil as Prime Con­trac­tor. These are buses made by Queens­lan­ders for Queens­lan­ders and that mar­ket is ex­tremely im­por­tant for our busi­ness,” he said.

“We’re de­lighted to be cre­at­ing new jobs and in­vest­ing back into the state’s labour mar­ket.”

This is the first time Volgren has man­u­fac­tured ar­tic­u­lated com­bos on a large scale. The ve­hi­cle is specif­i­cally de­signed to find the happy medium be­tween pas­sen­ger com­fort and low-floor con­ve­nience.

“We se­cured strong in­ter­est from Trans­port Can­berra off the back of our first demon­stra­tion model, which we built early last year,” Dale said.

“The de­sign of the new combo fea­tures both low and stan­dard floors, giv­ing the bus greater seat­ing ca­pac­ity, but also mak­ing it ac­ces­si­ble to prams, wheel­chairs and less mo­bile pas­sen­gers.”

Dale is hopeful more ar­tic­u­lated com­bi­na­tions and low-floor route buses will be built in Brisbane, pro­vid­ing in­creased longer-term em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties for staff.

“We’re de­lighted to be cre­at­ing new jobs and in­vest­ing back into the state’s labour mar­ket”

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