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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

New transit center dedicated in Hamden


HAMDEN - Gov. M. Jodi Rell today dedicated the recently completed CT Transit New Haven Division operations and maintenance center.

The facility at 2061 State St. is a 285,000-square-foot, environmentally friendly one that replaces an obsolete 62-year-old garage, Rell's office said in a statement.

“In the last six years we have made tremendous improvements in our roads, our rails, our ports and our public transportation network – because our economy depends on movement, whether we are talking about people or products,” Rell said, during a celebration at the new facility, the statement said. “Today, we’re focusing on the ‘people side.’”

“CT Transit serves 9 million people every year in Greater New Haven and the New Haven Division contributes at least $14 million a year to the area economy. Now we have a facility that is up to the job of keeping that division on the road – and serving those 9 million annual riders,” she said in the statement.

The New Haven Division operates a fleet of 114 buses on 24 routes, serving 17 towns throughout greater New Haven; it employs 280 people, the statement said.

Rell was joined by state Department of Transportation Commissioner Jeffrey A. Parker.

The Federal Transit Administration provided $79 million of the nearly $86 million in total construction costs.

“Where there was once a vacant steel plant in disrepair, we now have a new building that houses the bus storage, maintenance, and operations for a key part of our public transportation services,” Parker said, also in the statement. “The facility returns the property to a productive use and becomes a better neighbor in this community.”

CT Transit General Manager David Lee thanked the Governor and the DOT, noting that operations had smoothly transitioned to the Hamden property in mid-September with no disruption of customer service.

Rell and DOT officials also unveiled the first of 12 “bendy buses” during the dedication ceremony. The 60-foot, articulated transit buses seat 57 people - compared with 38 seats in a standard 40-foot bus - and replace 14-year-old vehicles. The new buses operate on biodiesel, with fuel economy improved by 6 percent over the older buses, and result in near zero emissions, meeting the EPA’s 2010 standards, the statement said.

The buses will be the first of their kind to operate in Connecticut, the statement said.

Editor's note: The information in this post was provided wholly by the governor's office. It is only lightly edited and is posted here as a public service.

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