The managers of Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) have awarded a $4.2-million contract to North American Bus Industries for the purchase of six 60-foot articulated CNG buses. The new buses will shuttle passengers between remotely parked jumbo aircraft and the terminals.
LAX requested the buses, three of which will replace older and smaller diesel models, to handle the larger passenger volume in the new Airbus A380 and other jumbo aircraft.
Seven international air carriers have announced plans to operate the A-380 at LAX beginning in November 2006. An A-380 can carry between 555 and 800 passengers, depending upon seating configuration.
Although LAX is modifying two boarding gates to accommodate the new jumbo aircraft, there will be times when remote parking of the planes is necessary, and the buses will be needed.
The new 60-foot buses can carry up to 140 passengers with carry-on baggage, compared to the 60 to 80 passengers in current airfield operations buses.
The contract includes an option to purchase up to six more buses during fiscal year 2006.
The LAX fleet currently has more than 400 alternative fuel vehicles, including LNG, LPG, CNG, and electric.