Nova Bus gets new contract

PLATTSBURGH - There's more business in store for one of the local automotive industry's biggest players.

Nova Bus has been awarded a contract from Connecticut Transit to provide 35 LFS Artic buses, with options on an additional 35 articulated vehicles over a four-year period. The value of the order is approximately $60 million.

According to Nova Bus, CT Transit selected a mix of clean-diesel and hybrid drives for its articulated vehicles, with deliveries starting in late 2010. CT Transit divisions serve seven metropolitan areas throughout the state of Connecticut, including Hartford, New Haven and Stamford.

The contract is one Nova Bus marketing director Nadine Bernard said the company looks forward to fulfilling through its Banker Road assembly plant.

"We are proud to partner with CT Transit in delivering their first articulated vehicles for their fleet," said Bernard. "We are deeply committed to supplying them with the vehicles that meet their expectations."

Bernard C. Bassett, Plattsburgh Town Supervisor, said the contract is a good economic sign for not only Nova Bus, but the town and surrounding area as well.

"It's certainly good news for Nova Bus and their employees, but it also speaks well to our region," said Bassett. "I think there was a sense by some people that once Nova Bus began production, it would be difficult to maintain enough orders to sustain employment levels. Thankfully, with good news like this, that's not the case."

Bassett said he expects the contract would mean visits from CT Transit representatives to the Plattsburgh facility, which would equate to dollars spent on dining and lodging.

"They may need to come out here several times and that would mean they'd be staying in our hotels and eating at our restaurants, who would all benefit," said Bassett. "Then, they may find they'd like to return to the Champlain Valley with their families on vacation. The economic spin-off could just continue."

In a prepared statement, Plattsburgh-North Country Chamber of Commerce president Garry F. Douglas called the contract "excellent development and said the North Country is positioned well "as an emerging center for the production of 21st century transportation equipment, both in terms of buses and rail."

"We now need to see more such contracts secured for Nova Bus, Bombardier and their suppliers," stated Douglas. "We regard this as an economic development priority and welcome this contract as a very positive start to the new year."

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