MBTA General Manager Rich Davey joined MassDOT Secretary and CEO Jeffrey Mullan in a ribbon-cutting at Back Bay Station today to celebrate delivery of the first eight diesel hybrid buses and announce the rollout of a total of 25 new 60-foot articulated low floor diesel hybrid buses to serve Boston neighborhoods. Officials joined in the inaugural run of one of the new buses along bus Route 39.
Federal stimulus American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds purchased the fleet of emission-controlled, eco-friendly buses. The MBTA will serve more bus riders on some of its most popular routes with buses that reduce pollution in Boston neighborhoods through a hybrid system capable of improving fuel efficiency by 20% or greater compared to conventional diesel buses.
The first four buses will be put immediately into service along Route 39, Forest Hills to Back Bay. Other new hybrid buses will be put into service two to three per week through the end of June on the Route 28 line, Mattapan Station to Ruggles via Dudley, and along the Silver Line Washington Street route.
A total of seven bus routes originating from the Southampton Garage will be served by the new buses, reaching 12 Boston communities including Jamaica Plain, Longwood, Fenway, Back Bay, Dorchester, Roxbury, South End, Chinatown, South Boston Waterfront, East Boston and Boston's Financial District
The new buses arrived in time to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Earth Day. The new hybrid buses are quieter, with extra wide 41-inch center and rear doors, wheelchair ramps at the front door, and cameras and video recording for security.