Metro News Release

For immediate release: May 24, 2012

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Metro unveils new MetroAccess vehicles
16 state-of-the-art vehicles are first built specifically for accessible services

MV1 vehicle

Metro General Manager and CEO Richard Sarles and the Metro Board of Directors today unveiled the first of 16 new “MV1” vehicles being piloted for MetroAccess service. The MV1—or Mobility Vehicle 1--is the first and only vehicle designed from the ground up for wheelchair accessibility.

“We are always looking for ways to improve MetroAccess service for the customers who depend on us,” said Assistant General Manager of Access Services, Christian T. Kent. “We are excited to pilot the MV1 because we believe it will give us a more versatile option for providing trips, while maintaining a fully accessible paratransit fleet.”

Specifically designed for paratransit service providers, the MV1 requires no conversion or after-market equipment. The current MetroAccess fleet is comprised primarily of conversion vans that have been modified with additional headroom, lifts and equipment for use in the provision of paratransit service.

Along with advanced safety features, a smoother, quieter ride, and a design that maximizes space and convenience, MetroAccess customers will benefit from shorter boarding times as a result of the MV1 ramp design, which allows customers to board without the use of a lift. The vehicles cost about $50,000 each.

Built in Mishawaka, Ind., by manufacturer VPG, the MV1 features:

  • Smaller size for improved maneuverability in congested areas
  • Comfortable seating for up to 4 customers
  • A wide doorway (36” by 56”) allowing for easy entry for all passengers
  • Improved fuel economy as compared with conversion vans
  • An integrated shallow-angle ramp with anti-slip surface
  • Improved reliability due to use of ramp versus conventional lift

MetroAccess will begin using MV1 vehicles in revenue service beginning next month. The vehicles will be dispatched based on operational needs throughout the region.

MetroAccess customers will be asked to provide feedback on the new vehicles over the coming months.

News release issued at 1:36 pm, May 24, 2012.

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