These buses were made for me…well for those travelling to-and-from the Hamilton GO station. When I first saw them on the road, I was excited because it meant that I could get a new perspective on my daily commutes. Here are some quick facts about the new buses:
- lower floors, and a longer, more gradual ramp for easier boarding and exiting
- two wider mobility device areas to provide improved maneuverability
- eight electrical outlets for customer use (four on each level) with two in the wheeled mobility device area
- automated next-stop announcements and visual displays for consistent and timely information (available on all GO Buses)
- more space to store luggage
- reclining seats on the lower floor
- tinted windows for increased UV protection and temperature control
- We’re adding 38 of these buses to our fleet by the end of 2016, and will have a total of 253 by 2020.
According to the GO Transit the “buses will help us provide even more accessible service and a more comfortable ride.”
Now for the read dirt about riding on these suckers. The upper floor, is always cold. There are bursts of hot air, but for the majority of the time it’s cold. When one of the bus drivers asked me about temperature, I told him the truth: “It’s freezing up there.”
With regards to the “visual displays”, these are two 24″ monitors that are located on the upper floor. One at the front and one by the stairs. These are great to indicate what stop is coming up…if you can see it from where you seated. But during the ride home, these displays are very bright and are annoying. For me, the ride home is down time to relax and chill out. I can’t do this when two bright white monitors are on with the GO logo staring at me.
“The new low-floor, low-height double-deckers are 39 cm lower than our first generation of double-decker buses, and 24 cm lower than the second generation, which means they are able to clear more bridges and trees, increasing the number of routes they can travel on.” – GO Transit
Yes, they are lower, which also means that the ceilings are lower. Luckily, I’m short, but for all those tall people (and I know there are a few of you), this must be annoying to have to crouch when previously you had a lot of head room.
When I found out that there were outlets, I started looking for them. They are not easily found. Why there are only 8 in total on these buses seems a lot less than there should be, but I managed to find them. This is an added bonus, that I love! Finally, I can work and charge up all my devices on the way home.
I must say that there seems to be more room, I have yet to experience travelling on the lower level, but it’s not a smooth transition. I overheard a couple tonight discussing all the things wrong with the bus, which I agree with.
There are two sun roofs, but when it was raining hard the other day, it sounded like the rain was going to flood the bus. Now, I don’t know if it was because of the temperature issue, but the interior was dripping because of the weather.
Needless to say, I look forward to when there are outlets for all the riders, not just for eight of them. I also can’t wait to experience riding it in the summer when it’s hot and the window doesn’t fog up so you can’t see anything.