Double decker buses are back on the roads

Community Transit’s double decker buses have returned to Snohomish County.

The first of 23 “Double Talls” rolled into service Thursday morning on route 413 from the Swamp Creek Park & Ride to downtown Seattle. The buses, which were paid for largely by to a federal stimulus grant, are replacing older 60-foot articulated buses.

“The Double Talls are popular and practical, and we are excited to be the first transit agency in the Northwest to put them into regular service,” said Community Transit CEO Joyce Eleanor. “While these buses have a striking appearance and the views from the top floor are amazing, we are excited because the Double Talls allow us to make much-needed updates to our fleet and improve our productivity.”

The 14-foot tall buses seat 77 passengers – 49 upstairs and 28 downstairs – plus have designated standing room. They require less maintenance and use less fuel than the buses they are replacing.

Community Transit leased a double decker bus from 2007 to 2009 to see if it would work as a regular commuter bus. It transported more people for the same cost as an articulated bus, with fewer maintenance and operational concerns.

They are made by the same company that makes the famous London double deckers.

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