This past Sunday was a milestone… The remaining 1999 NABI’s were officially retired form service.
Bus #801 was the last bus in the series (730-809) to be “laid to rest” so to speak [pictured above]. I am quite surprised that these buses lasted for 18 long years. I’ve read articles online where other transit agencies with NABI’s from the same year have been retired long ago, however a handful do remain in service. Miami-Dade Transit is also retiring their 1999 buses this year, and they were built after VIA had received theirs.
Honestly VIA does a great job maintaining their buses. The last bus series to run for 18 years were the 1992 TMC RTS #633-662. Even though several buses were retired early, most made it to 2010 when VIA received the hybrid fleet. Those things were constantly breaking down, some on a daily basis.
Now that the 1999’s are gone, next is the 2000 fleet (810-889). Looking at the photo above you can see buses 815, 816, 818, 810, 811, and 824 which were added recently. The only bus to not be retired (yet) up to 824 is bus #812. However I have a suspicion that I saw it at the VIA paint shop getting painted white, which means the end of the road for it.
Another interesting note is the vacant lot you can see on the left of the photo. The previous owner moved out 2 weeks ago. Since my visit last week, the lot has been cleared of buildings, debris, and the fence has also been removed. This can only mean that VIA is now leasing this lot to add more buses, since I doubt they could fit the remaining NABI’s in the remaining lot on the right. I’ll find out when I visit the graveyard this Sunday for my weekly update.