June People & Places

June 6, 2017





Proterra Begins Autonomous Bus Program

Proterra announced the company is initiating an autonomous bus program with the University of Nevada, Reno and its Living Lab Coalition partners, which includes the Regional Transportation Commission of Washoe County (RTC), the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles, the Nevada Governor’s Office for Economic Development, Fraunhofer Institute for Transportation and Infrastructure Systems IVI, and the cities of Reno, Sparks and Carson City, Nevada.

This autonomous vehicle pilot will deal with real road conditions from the perspective of public transit systems, and emphasize the most challenging aspects related to mass transportation, which include dense and dynamic environments, degraded conditions and a need for swift emergency response. The pilot will also explore a new set of robotic perception algorithms that are required to address these conditions, and focus on tight cues from multi-modal sensors and new multi-modal localization and mapping.


Antelope Valley Transit Authority on the Road to 100% Electric

The Antelope Valley Transit Authority (AVTA) announced the delivery of its first 60-foot articulated electric bus made by BYD; as well as the completion of the first ever Wireless Advanced Vehicle Electrification (WAVE) inductive chargers in Southern California.

Backed by its board of directors, AVTA adopted a vision of converting the entire existing bus fleet to 100 percent battery electric vehicles by 2018. The AVTA executive team and staff have worked tirelessly to bring this vision to life.


New Flyer Electrifies U.S. DOT Earth Day Fair

New Flyer Industries Inc. (New Flyer) signaled its expansion in electric mass transportation, showcasing the Xcelsior XE40 electric bus it delivered to Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (Metro) at the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Earth Day Fair.


Amtrak President and CEO Announces New York Penn Station Improvement Initiatives

Amtrak President and CEO Wick Moorman announced a series of initiatives to strengthen railroad infrastructure and improve operations and preparedness at New York Penn Station. The Penn Station Improvement Initiatives include: New York Penn Station Infrastructure Renewal Program; New York Penn Station Passenger Concourse Coordination Review; Development of a Joint Station Concourse Operations Center; and Safety & Security.


VIA Debuts New CNG Fleet

VIA Metropolitan Transit introduced the first of more than 400 new compressed natural gas (CNG) buses April 20. The new buses, manufactured by Nova Bus, are 40 feet by 102 inches, with a 67-passenger capacity.


Arboc Releases Ford Spirit of Independence

Arboc Specialty Vehicles LLC released the first Ford Spirit of Independence (SOI), a 23 foot bus built on the Ford Transit T350 Cutaway chassis. The Ford Spirit of Independence has a 96-inch width and a flat floor design that allows stress-free maneuverability for up to 15 ambulatory and five wheelchair passengers.



Alstom and Airbus signed a cooperation agreement in cybersecurity to support the emergence of a new risk management model adapted to the evolution of the transport industry.


Keolis announced it has won an eight-year contract for the operation and maintenance of Foothill Transit and will assume management of the operation on July 1, 2017.


Complete Coach Works announced the successful delivery of two refurbished transit buses to the city of Modesto’s Area Express (MAX). The contract consists of the refurbishment of fourteen 35-foot and 40-foot low floor transit buses.


Lilee Systems announced its collaboration with Fluidmesh Networks to provide reliable train-to-ground communications to railways around the world.


Allison Transmission announced FuelSense 2.0, featuring DynActive Shifting, delivering up to 6 percent additional fuel savings beyond its original FuelSense software.


Motor Coach Industries (MCI) announced that NJ Transit issued a notice-to-proceed for the second year of its six-year contract to manufacture and deliver 185 commuter coaches for an approximate total value of $92 million.


The Kansas City Area Transportation Authority, in partnership with Transdev, rolled out an app-based public transit service called RideKC Freedom On-Demand as a one-year pilot enabling customers to call on taxis.


Siemens is launching Digital Rail Services in the U.S., a new business that will use intelligent sensors and advanced software platforms to put intelligence behind billions of data points created on the country’s rail systems.


The Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority’s (TheRide) Blake Transit Center, which opened in March 2014, has been officially certified as a LEED Gold building by the United States Green Building Council.


Big Blue Bus launched a mobile ticketing application pilot in partnership with Token Transit that provides customers a cashless fare payment choice.


The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and Cambria County Transit Authority opened the newest CNG fueling station in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, the first of 29 new CNG stations Love’s Trillium CNG will design, build and maintain for numerous transit authorities in Pennsylvania as part of a public-private partnership (P-3) contract PennDOT awarded to the company last year.


Voith Digital Solutions announced a long-term agreement to partner with Persistent Systems LLC to offer its radio technology to all of Voith’s industrial environments.


Rotary Lift introduced the 35,900-lb. capacity HDC36, the newest member of its HDC series heavy-duty four-post lifts.


The Central Ohio Transit Authority launched its Transit Systems Redesign (TSR), a redesigned bus network on May 1 that features simplified routes, increased frequency and more service seven days a week.



Tim Curran

San Diego Metropolitan Transit System

The San Diego Metropolitan Transit System (MTS) hired former San Diego County Assistant Sheriff Tim Curran to oversee all field security operations of the MTS Transit Enforcement Department. He will supervise approximately 200 transit officers. Prior to joining MTS, Curran served in the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department for 27 years. In his most recent post, Curran was one of three assistant sheriffs to Sheriff Bill Gore.


Francesco Cantatore, P.E.

HNTB Corp.

Francesco Cantatore, P.E., joined HNTB Corp. as senior program director, rail systems. Cantatore is an expert in rolling stock, rail systems, including traditional and high-speed rail systems, with experience in operations, engineering, supply chain management, procurement and project delivery. He has had success in examining and re-engineering operational procedures, managing complex rail system projects, formulating operational policies and procedures.


Cathy Holmes-Lewis

Palm Tran

Palm Tran announced the appointment of Cathy Holmes-Lewis as senior manager of human resources. Lewis will be responsible for directing, administering, coordinating and evaluating all aspects of the Human Resources Section at Palm Tran. She will be responsible for developing a robust, strategic method of workforce planning and management, as well as managing all aspects of human resources and organizational development for Palm Tran’s 600+ employees.


Laura Koprowski

Central Ohio Transit Authority

The Central Ohio Transit Authority (COTA) announced the appointment of Laura Koprowski to vice president of government affairs and strategic external communications. He will oversee government affairs and coordinate strategic external communications, developing and implementing advocacy strategies to promote public transportation and COTA initiatives in the community. Koprowski was previously at the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC).