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PSNJ: the last years........
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629
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PostPosted: Wed May 10, 2023 4:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When PS decided to replace the ASV's with diesel buses; the first lines to be converted were those serving the HUDSON Division, in 1947.

The remaining ESSEX Division lines were converted during 1948.

Initially, the ASV's were replaced by new TD-4008's; soon to follow were the 4509's, which PS purchased in great numbers........

"NYO"

(Source: "PUBLIC SERVICE OF NEW JERSEY'S ALL-SERVICE VEHICLE" (Wilkins/Phraner)

["27 MT. PROSPECT"]
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629
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PostPosted: Wed May 10, 2023 10:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

........at one time, (beginning in the mid/late 1930's) PS also operated single-door, rear-engine YELLOW gas buses (similar to the ASV Model 729's) for intercity service.

These buses were also equipped with roof-mounted luggage racks.

Between 1948 and 1950, PS also acquired a number of GM PDA-4101's (these buses were numbered in the "B" series).......

"NYO"


["ATLANTIC CITY"]
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629
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PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2023 12:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Historical footnotes:

In 1948, Public Service Electric & Gas was formed, as per requirements of the SEC, with PSCT remaining as a wholly-owned subsidiary.

In 1971, PSCT becomes TRANSPORT OF NEW JERSEY (TNJ), as the parent firm attempts to distance itself from the money-losing public transport business. The parent firm is now traded as Public Service Enterprise group.

In 1976, the NJDOT, on behalf of TNJ and other bus operators, orders 866 New Look buses from FLXIBLE; this was New Jersey's largest bus order up to that date.....

'NYO"

["166 NEW YORK"]
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629
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PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2023 7:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ASV's.............

Until I purchased the outstanding book "PUBLIC SERVICE OF NEW JERSEY'S ALL-SERVICE VEHICLE" (Wikins/Phraner) I had no idea whatsoever just how complicated a vehicle the ASV was, nor did I have even the slightest clue as to how involved it was for a driver to pilot.

The dashboard was very advanced for the day, and far more complex that which would have been found on any of the gas buses of the day.

In addition to a brake pedal, there were also two accelerators, one for use in trolley bus mode, and one for use in gas mode.

There were also buttons for automatically raising and lowering the trolley poles.

PS men went through a very involved and intricate training period, prior to getting behind the wheel of an ASV for the first time......

"NYO"

["49 UNION"]
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629
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PostPosted: Fri May 12, 2023 2:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another very interesting aspect of ASV operations were the reversal loops at each end of the line.

Some lines utilized a "wired"loop, allowing the coach to anter and leave the loop via electric power.

Other lines used "non-wired" loops, meaning that the driver (at the end of a certain line) would have to lower the poles and switch over to gas power, use a non-wired loop, and then head back to the wire pan, where the driver would automatically raise the poles.

At 90th Street & Bergenline Avenue (North Bergen) ASV's of the "#21" out of Hoboken (these were the runs that either "short-turned" near Nungessers, or ran through to Palisades Junction, in Fort Lee); would stop, with the driver acknowledging the metal sign that hung from the cross-span wires "EOW"("End Of Wire").

The poles would be lowered and the bus, if on a thru run to Fort Lee, would simply continue its run in gas mode.

If, however, the run was a "short turn", the driver (with poles locked down) would swing west on Hudson Boulevard for a block, before turning into a side street, and then another, to get back onto Bergenline Avenue for its inbound run to Hoboken.

The driver would position the bus underneath the wire pan, and (after switching to electric mode) raise the poles; the pan would automatically guide the poles onto the overhead.....

"NYO"

["21 WEST NEW YORK"]
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629
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PostPosted: Fri May 12, 2023 10:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Had the "D900" ASV revival gone through, it would not have been a monumental tremendous expenditure, regarding the new overhead wiring.

Though new wire would have been erected in the City Subway, it would not have gone beyond this, as the new diesel-electric coaches would have only used overhead while using the Subway.

Several factors, as I had mentioned previously, led to PSNJ abandoning the ASV revival, but, the factor that was "the deciding vote" was that the City of Newark refused to foot the bill for the paving over of the Subway ROW.

PS decided it was indeed far cheaper to purchase second-hand streetcars for the "#7 CITY SUBWAY"; the last of the connecting subway-surface streetcar lines (#29) was converted to diesel buses in March, 1952.

PS eventually purchased thirty used PCC cars from TCRT, beginning in 1953; these venerable cars, indeed iconic, ran until replaced by new light rail units in 2001.

Had the ASV comeback gone through, PS would have purchased nearly 100 of the "D900"-type GM-built ASV's, for routes entering downtown Newark via the subway......

"NYO"

["7 CITY SUBWAY"]
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 19, 2023 6:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

.........I've just learned of the demolition of the historic, sprawling ex-PSNJ carbarn/garage in Union City, between 27th St. and 29th Streets, and Bergenline and New York Avenues.

The oldest part of the building (with castle-like turrets, and dubbed "The Big House" by PS men) was built during the 1890's; the newer section of the building was built over an open streetcar storage yard, prior to WW1, bordering on 29th St.

I grew up with this historic facility; I have so many memories.

NJT closed the facility in the early 1990's (several bays still had the long-dormant streetcar tracks embedded in the floor; the last streetcars departed in August, 1949)

Oddly, the ex-PSNJ Market Street garage in Paterson, designed very much like the Union City facility, is being renovated by NJT, and is also a landmark.

Interestingly, NJT will be building a new garage/support facilities/office space on the Union City site, and will also handle electric buses.

A terminal will also be incorporated into the new facility.

I find it quite ironic that, after NJT closed the Union City garage some three decades ago, they are now returning to the same location, albeit with a new garage/office/terminal complex

Today, the only ex-PS carbarn/garage in Hudson County still standing is the former West New York carbarn/garage; it has been used as a DPW facility for decades, and had changed very little over the decades.

Another historic piece of PS's rich legacy has, sadly, vanished down the echoing corridors of time.......... Sad

"NYO"

["UNION CITY"]


Last edited by NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629 on Thu Jul 20, 2023 12:50 am; edited 1 time in total
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 19, 2023 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

These two photos (the first dating to the mid-1930's, and the second to the 1940's) were taken just outside of PSNJ's Union City car house/garage (this is the eastern side of the facility,on New York Avenue)

Car #2135 (painted in the "De Luxe" scheme, and converted to one-man, single-end operation) is signed for the "SUMMIT" line.

This line, and the "UNION CITY" line were the last two Union City streetcar lines when they were converted to buses in August, 1949.

"Compromise" roof-car #3281 (seen sporting the last new PS paint scheme for the trolleys) is on an NRHS excursion; the car is signed for "OAKLAND", which was a Jersey City route, based out of the (since demolished) Greenville carhouse, which also served ASV's and buses.

The apartment houses on New York Avenue still survive today.

Vestiges of some of the old trolley rails were visible for many decades after the streetcars stopped running.................

https://www.nycsubway.org/perl/show?118312

https://www.nycsubway.org/perl/show?117015

(courtesy: nycsubway.org)

["SUMMIT"]


Last edited by NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629 on Wed Jul 19, 2023 11:12 pm; edited 1 time in total
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 19, 2023 11:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

These work cars were spotted on the New York Avenue side of the Union City carbarns; the diminutive rail grinder (which originally was assigned to the CENTRAL Division's "43 UNION" until that line was converted to ASV in 1935) was later sold to CAPITAL TRANSIT (Washington)

The snow sweeper is marked "BIG TREE"; this PS facility on the CENTRAL Division went to bus/ASV in 1937, and this car was then transferred to the HUDSON Division for further service.........

https://www.nycsubway.org/perl/show?117971

https://www.nycsubway.org/perl/show?117972

https://www.nycsubway.org/perl/show?117966 *

*The PS bus in the background is facing east on 29th St.

(courtesy:nycsubway.org)

["PSNJ"]
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2023 7:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting PSNJ (Union City) trivia.........

Though ASV's operated on the HUDSON Division through 1947, the UNION CITY garage/carbarn was the only PS facility on the HUDSON Division not to serve as a base for the dual-powered trolleybuses.

The HUDSON Division ASV's were stabled/repaired at the WEST NEW YORK garage (last streetcars in 1938), and, also at GREENVILLE (Jersey City)

Like UNION CITY, the last streetcars departed from this facility in August of 1949.

The heaviest repairs for ASV's/buses/streetcars were carried out at the PLANK ROAD shops in Newark...........

"NYO"

["21 WEST NEW YORK"]
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2023 12:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Like most other New Jersey suburban carriers of that time, PS rostered a large fleet of "parlor coaches"; by the 1960's, PS was operating both 4104's and 4106's.

By the later 1960's, "Buffalo"-types began arriving on TNJ property.

All of these buses could (and did) operate in both long-haul commuter runs, and in charter service (recall PSNJ/TNJ once did a VERY brisk charter business)

Had PS/TNJ survived as an "independent", I can easily see MCI's being ordered, replacing older buses.

Outside of a small group of ACF-BRILL C-44 suburbans delivered in 1947 (which were later sold to DE CAMP), and one lone postwar MACK suburban, PS (and, later, TNJ) remained stalwart and faithful GM customers.

It was not until the massive influx of NJDOT Flex New Looks (1976/1977) that non-GM buses began appearing on TNJ routes.

This order of Flex New Looks to many New Jersey operators has the distinction of still being the largest order of buses for New Jersey ever; nearly 1,000 buses were delivered to the Garden State, courtesy of the NJDOT.............

"NYO"

["165 NEW YORK"]
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2023 11:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Recall, also, that, when PS's bus operations broke away from utility parent PSE&G (and became "TNJ" in the early 1970's), the Newark City Subway was the sole reminder of the once-vast PSNJ streetcar newtork.

By the early 1970's, thirty ex-TCRT PCC's were in use, running on the #7, along with several ancient PSNJ work cars.

The last of the connecting subway-surface streetcar lines was converted to bus in 1952 (#29); by early 1954, the last of the elderly PS streetcars were replaced by the second-hand PCC's.

Today, the Subway is known as "Newark Light Rail", and all of the charm and nostalgia has evaporated from the line, with the PCC's now long-gone, replaced by bland "Baby Beluga" LRV's.

I railfanned this line intently for a number of years, beginning in the early 1970's.

I last rode the Subway in 2000, one year before the PCC's were retired.

It just ain't the same, these days............

"NYO"

["7 CITY SUBWAY"]
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 25, 2023 10:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

PSNJ operating divisions:

HUDSON

ESSEX

BERGEN

PASSAIC

CENTRAL

SOUTHERN*

The streetcar lines of the BERGEN, PASSAIC, CENTRAL, and SOUTHERN Divisions were all converted to ASV/bus by the late 1930's.

The last four HUDSON Division car lines were converted to buses in August, 1949.

With the exception of the Newark City Subway, the ESSEX Division saw its last streetcars converted to bus in March, 1952...................

"NYO"

*It should be noted that PSNJ's SOUTHERN Division utilized wide-gauge track; in the early 30's, with most Camden lines already converted to buses, a number of surplus cars went north (via PRR flat cars) to operate on the HUDSON and ESSEX Divisions.

These cars had to be re-gauged before they could re-enter revenue service.
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2023 3:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Today, the former PSNJ Divisions no longer exist.

There are now but two NJT operating divisions, the NORTHERN Division and the SOUTHERN Division.

Back in the day, the ESSEX Division was the busiest of all the PS divisions, with the HUDSON Division running a close second............

"NYO"

["21 WEST NEW YORK"]
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 28, 2023 11:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

PSNJ was one of the few operators to roster the 5106; these a/c-equipped bus had single doors and standee windows; only 110 of these buses were built-all dated to 1958------PS was the largest operator of this type; ORANGE & BLACK also operated these buses-also RED & TAN and DC TRANSIT------unlike "standard" Old Looks these buses were equipped with large rectangular rear windows----------------"NYO"
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