A Rockland bus shelter on Route 59 near the Thruway exit 14 park and ride lot is trying something new when it comes to energy.
The Rockland Department of Public Transportation recently retrofit the structure with solar panels and a light box aimed at providing reliable and cost-effective power, officials said. The project cost $6,000, and was funded with non-taxpayer transportation funds.
"The installation is a pilot project, and the equipment is currently in the testing phase," transportation officials wrote in a press release. "[It is] designed to provide... increased safety and improved delivery of customer information for its Transport of Rockland (TOR) and TAPPAN ZEExpress (TZx) bus services."
The installation was competed on Dec. 13—the solar panels can work in both sunny and cloudy conditions, officials noted.
"Rockland County continues to take advantage of the latest state-of-the-art technology and alternative energy sources to improve service delivery," said County Executive C. Scott Vanderhoef. "The light box installed in the shelter, along with the solar panels, will enable the county to provide highly-illuminated, customer-focused information about its bus services, including service announcements, schedules and maps."
"The Department of Public Transportation is testing the solar panels now, with the intention of launching a shelter upgrade program in the spring," said Commissioner Thomas B. Vanderbeek, P.E. "We hope to retrofit five to 10 shelters each year with the solar panels, and will also include this 'green' technology in any new shelters we install once the upgrade program is underway."