FORT WORTH (KRLD/CBSDFW.COM) – Some hi-tech, high-dollar buses are about to hit the streets of Fort Worth. They’re called Spur* buses – short for signal, priority, urban, route.
The new Fort Worth Transportation Authority (The T) buses carry 50-percent more passengers and are loaded with technology, including 10 security cameras.
“All of our buses actually have security cameras on them. This just has more than our other buses, because it’s bigger,” explained Dick Ruddell, the President/Executive Director of The T. “We also have a camera that points out the back, so the driver knows what’s going on directly behind the bus.”
There are eight new buses and the first will be put into service on the East Lancaster Street route on Sunday as part of Phase One of an Enhanced Bus Corridor on The T’s busiest bus route.
Even during roadway gridlock, stop-and-go traffic will be less of a problem for the buses. Fort Worth traffic lights will know when the new 60-foot buses are approaching. “We’re gonna have signal prioritization, which means that the red lights will turn green a little faster for this bus than the normal traffic,” Ruddell said.
The futuristic looking Spur* buses are articulated. “People will notice it on the streets. It’s not only bigger, it bends in the middle,” said Ruddell.
Digital displays at bus stops give waiting passengers real-time schedule information. Ruddell put it simply, “So when you walk up there there’ll be a sign that tells you when the next bus is gonna to arrive.”
All of the new buses run on compressed natural gas. And while the sticker price for each bus was about $800,000, you can ride it for a buck and a half.