Dou­ble deck­ers join coun­cil fleet

Waikato News - - FRONT PAGE -

For the first time, dou­ble decker buses are oper­at­ing on Waikato Re­gional Coun­cil’s pub­lic bus net­work, and their ex­tended ca­pac­ity could ben­e­fit lo­cal com­muters who travel to Hamil­ton for work or recre­ation.

The two buses — con­structed for Go Bus by De­sign­line, a Christchurch firm, ar­rived in Hamil­ton last month and have been get­ting decked out in new liv­ery. They rolled out on the Or­biter bus route in Hamil­ton for the first time this month. It makes the op­tion of us­ing the Waipa bus to travel to Hamil­ton and link­ing to Hamil­ton’s net­work a more at­trac­tive op­tion than driv­ing.

Two more buses will join the BUSIT net­work — one each on the Raglan and North­ern Con­nec­tor routes — in May.

Waikato Re­gional Coun­cil worked with con­tracted bus op­er­a­tor Go Bus to in­tro­duce the dou­ble deck­ers to the fleet to cre­ate more ca­pac­ity on some of the city’s most pop­u­lar bus routes. Waikato re­gional coun­cil­lor Russ Rim­ming­ton says this is an ex­cit­ing so­lu­tion for passengers try­ing to get on full buses in the morn­ing and af­ter­noon peaks.

“Each bus has 87 seats and the abil­ity to carry 13 stand­ing passengers on the bottom level,” he says.

“All up that’s 100 peo­ple and al­most 20 more than our next big­gest bus. In the city we now have a com­pletely refurbished or new bus fleet. All buses are fully ac­ces­si­ble and air con­di­tioned, and the next step is free on board Wi-Fi on the Hamil­ton bus net­work soon.”

Go Bus com­mer­cial di­rec­tor Craig Worth says these are the first dou­ble deck city buses in the Go Bus fleet in New Zealand.

“Due to the height of the bus they’re a lit­tle different for our staff to drive, so there’s been some spe­cial train­ing drivers have un­der­taken over the past few weeks to make sure they’re ready for to­day,” he says.


New dou­ble decker bus in ser­vice on Waikato Re­gional Coun­cil’s Or­biter route in Hamil­ton.

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