NFTA Transporter

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Hats (and mittens) Off to NFTA Employees

Front row - Gregory.  Second row: Kim Minkel, Dustin, Hayley, Sierra, Alexis
Lisa Piecki and Tim Brennan,
Chief Development Officer from the Boys & Girls Clubs of Buffalo. 
The NFTA just wrapped up its 2nd Annual Hat, Mitten and Scarf drive to benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Buffalo.  The community spirit of NFTA employees provided over 300 warm and cozy items to children in need this season.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Metro donates Festival of Lights tickets

Metro's Lisa Piecki and Pamela Chrzanowski,
Development Specialist, The Kevin Guest House 
Dec. 20 - NFTA-Metro provided Festival of Lights carload tickets and stadium blankets to be used by friends and families visiting the the Kevin Guest House. Located in the heart of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, Kevin Guest House has the distinction of being the very first hospital hospitality house in the nation.

Santa Visits Rail Stations

Santa and his eleves made a visit to four Metro Rail Stations on Wednesday, Dec. 19. They checked to see if passengers (ticket inspectors, operators and Transit Police) were being good. The elves told this reporter that no one is on the naughty list this year.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Santa Takes Metro

On Sunday, December 2, Santa parked his sleigh and he and his helpers rode Metro’s Route 34 bus from Boulevard Mall to University Station and back. This was a great way for him to talk with riders and find out who has been naughty or nice.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

A Big Delivery from FedEx

FedEx Express gave the NFTA a Boeing 727 on Dec. 5. While the Authority does not operate any aircraft, Chairman Howard A. Zemsky and Executive Director Kimberley A. Minkel were on hand to happily accept the gift.

The Governor’s Bus

New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo visited Western New York Tuesday, Dec. 4 and chose a Metro bus to get around the region. The Governor had a number of stops to make, from Buffalo to Niagara Falls. Metro provided a bus and operator and drove a route not terribly dissimilar to the usual Route 60 – Niagara.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Keeping things moving at Cold Spring


For the fiscal year 2011-2012 Cold Spring Garage obtained a service interval (mileage between major mechanical service interruptions) of 8,173 miles – up a whopping 4,398 miles from the year before. 

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Starring Metro Rail


New Era produced a new video last month, staged on Metro Rail, and at our Events Only Station. Check it out. I don't think Metro has ever looked quite this hip.

Monday, November 26, 2012

NFTA team runs away with the Turkey Trot

Congratulations to the NFTA Accelerators. Our team in the annual YMCA Turkey Trot took first place with an average time of 32:15. That is the NFTA team's best average ever, beating 2008 (32:23) and 2009 (36:05).

Monday, November 19, 2012

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Transit Police Officer Garrity Honored

Our own Lt. Michael Garrity, who serves as the day shift commander for the Metro Rail division of the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority Transit Police Department, was honored by the Greater Buffalo Metropolitan Crime Stoppers, Inc. for his continued dedication to law enforcement.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Operator Recognized by Transit Police


Metro Bus operator Alzo Kennedy has been recognized by the NFTA Transit Police with a certificate of appreciation for outstanding performance this past spring.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Check Please

Mercy Flight of WNY accepted a check for $7,000 during the NFTA’s Board meeting, Mon. Oct. 22. The donation was raised at the Airport Noise Mitigation Symposium recently held in and around Buffalo Niagara.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

PAL helps a lost child

7:30 AM, Oct. 11: Paratransit Operator Ann McLaughlin drove down Fillmore, passing an empty parking lot, when a woman attempted to flag her down. Paratransit is not a stop-on-demand service, so this would not be the way Ann picked up a customer. She could tell something was wrong, though. She stopped and noticed a toddler running around the lot, not fully dressed. The temperature outside was just above freezing.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

It adds up to Jason

When it comes to all things finance at the NFTA, Jason Abounader’s name will certainly turn up in the mix. Jason has worked as the Manager of Finance and Administration since December of 2010, and prior to that he was a Cost Analyst in the Accounting Department.

Friday, October 12, 2012

The NFTA’s Black Achiever for 2012

This year, the Authority celebrates Public Safety Record Specialist Christine Herring as a 2012 Black Achiever.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Honoring ARFF

Kudos to the men and women of the Buffalo Niagara International Airport’s Aircraft-Rescue-Fire Department for being selected to receive a Buffalo Fire Commissioner’s Unit Citation.

Sam I am

When asked to describe how he feels at the end of a day of work, Sam Falcone thinks for a moment and says “That was fun.” Such a simple and inspiring thought from a man who has been working at the NFTA for over 35 years.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Dawn of a New Year

Dawn Skimmer recently celebrated her one year anniversary at the NFTA. Dawn is the smiling face with the pleasant voice at the reception desk whether you visit the downtown terminal or call the main phone line. As NFTA’s “gatekeeper,” Dawn greets employees and visitors, directs phone inquiries and assists the walk-in public with questions.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Growing a roof


Metro has installed its first “living roof” on the bus shelter at Ellicott and N. Division, just outside the MTC.  Made of soil and live plants (drought resistant succulents), the turf roof provides cooling, creates a habitat for urban wildlife, and absorbs rainwater.  The plants will resist Buffalo’s cold, thrive in the heat, and, best of all, require next to no maintenance.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

An enhanced ‘hello’

Wednesday, Aug. 29, Metro visited four Park & Rides served by its new enhanced express service. Armed with ice cream, courtesy of Anderson’s, staff – along with Executive Director Kim Minkel – explained the benefits of the new service, and listened to ideas and suggestions from the riding public.

 Enhanced express service starts today on routes 60, 64, 69, 72 and 204. The trips make fewer stops, so they are faster. Buses running enhanced express trips are also Wi-Fi equipped. Riders can sit back and surf work on laptops, tablets or phones.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Day of Caring

Thanks to everyone who participated in the 20th Annual United Way Day of Caring.  This year’s team helped out at the Delaware YMCA, painting outside features that the not-for-profit hasn’t been able to get to all summer.  It is wonderful that so many members of the NFTA family volunteered their time to make our community a better place.

Monday, August 13, 2012

New Runway at NFIA

The Niagara Falls International Airport runway is nearly finished.  With $16.1 million spent on construction, and $21 million spent on the entire project, the new runway at Niagara Falls International Airport is something the NFTA is happy to unveil to the traveling public.  When asked how the work on the runway was going, project manager, John Diebold said, “Everything is going ahead of schedule.”

Thursday, July 26, 2012

2012 Dashboard Achievement Award

Great news from Metro! Another accomplishment has been bestowed upon the Babcock Station & Garage with its 2012 Dashboard Achievement Award for meeting or exceeding its goals in various categories such as on-time performance, safety and much more.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The Open House at Cold Spring

On Saturday, July 21, Metro held an Open House at Cold Spring.  Metro is currently seeking qualified mechanics and technicians and thought inviting the public in to see what Metro does, and give staff the chance to answer questions, might encourage new recruits.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Our new Director of HSEQ

Timothy P. Carvana has joined the Authority as Director of Health, Safety and Environment Quality. He comes to us after five years at the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, where he managed system safety and environmental programs for one of the largest transit systems in the country. Prior employment includes four and half years as an environment and engineering development planner at the Fulton County (GA) Board of Commissioners.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Metro Adds 14 Hybrid buses

“Its always great day when you can present a $8.6 million investment to the community,” Chairman Howard A. Zemsky said at today’s roll out of 14 new hybrid buses. The new clean diesel electrics will replace an equal number of the oldest conventional diesel buses operating in Metro’s fleet of 307, bringing the hybrid total up to 98.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Honor Flight

On Sat. June 9, the Buffalo Niagara International Airport once again welcomed Honor Flight, a non-profit organization created to pay tribute to America’s veterans. Working with Southwest Airlines, the organization took a plane full of World War II veterans to Washington, DC to visit the WWII Memorial. Honorees were flown back the same day, all without any cost to the participants.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Chase Corporate Challenge 2012

The NFTA’s Chase Corporate Challenge team put in a strong showing this year, with 35 athletes (and a few more back at the tent, making sure everything was either as warm or cold as it should be.) Michael Moore led the pack with a 20 minutes 50 second time. Nicely done. Congratulations to everyone.

Monday, May 21, 2012

A new Chairman

The New York State Legislature confirmed Howard A. Zemsky’s appointment by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo to become the next Chairman of the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority.

Welcome to our new Assistant Manager of Procurement

Cindy Judd will be responsible for administrative and supervisory work supporting the central purchasing operation of the Authority and managing the competitive procurement process in support of all NFTA operations for assigned categories/procurements in accordance with NFTA Procurement Guidelines, Policies and Procedures.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Introducing our new Manager of Grants, Darren Kempner

Darren will oversee the Grants Department and will be responsible for supervising the governmental assistance programs for all areas within the Authority. Darren holds a BA in economics/accounting from the College of the Holy Cross, is a Certified Public Accountant in New York State, and earned his Master's in urban and regional planning from the University of Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Captain Chiodo Receives Foundation Award

The Erie County Law Enforcement Foundation honored our own Chris N. Chiodo, Captain, NFTA Police Department with a Distinguished Service Award at their Annual banquet May 10, at Salvatore’s Italian Gardens. Captain Chiodo was one of 11 law enforcement officers from various agencies who were recognized by the Foundation for their individual dedication and outstanding contributions to law enforcement during the past year.

A double salute to the BNIA’s Tom Dames

Airfield Superintendent Thomas C. Dames can now officially add A.A.E to the end of his name. To become an accredited airport executive Tom embarked on course work that normally takes years to complete, ending with a set of exams designed to test a candidate’s knowledge of every aspect of air service, from compliance to finance to marketing. Tom worked towards the accreditation, on and off, for nine years, earning an MBA in the middle, while managing what is more than a full time job at the Airport. It is a testament to his dedication, coordination and skill.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Honor Flight Takes Off From Buffalo

The morning of Saturday, May 5, 27 World War II veterans and their escorts arrived at the Buffalo Niagara International Airport to take a trip of a lifetime.

The veterans, who were guests of the not-for-profit all volunteer organization Honor Flight Buffalo, were headed to Washington D.C. to visit the World War II Memorial, which was dedicated in 2004 . . . 59 years after the war ended. 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Boat Harbor Opens Early


The intrepid crew of the NFTA Boat Harbor opened the 1,000-slip marina to slip holders and the public two weeks ahead of the anticipated opening date.   Less then three miles from Downtown Buffalo, the harbor opened officially, May 1 to accommodate slip holders and boaters who want to get an early start at docking or launching their boats at the marina.  This is one of the few times that the facilities have ever been able to open prior May 15.

New Buffalo Niagara Visitor Center to be located Inside Buffalo Airport

Millions of people are about to be introduced to Buffalo Niagara’s incredible art, architecture, culture, sports, nature, food, lodging, events and entertainment. At a press event Friday, April 27, Visit Buffalo Niagara announced the creation of a new Buffalo Niagara Visitor Center within the Buffalo Niagara International Airport, made possible through a generous grant from First Niagara.

Friday, April 27, 2012

The 27th Annual NFTA Safety and Service Awards

The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority hosted a luncheon at the Protocol Restaurant in Williamsville, Sunday, April 22 to recognize the outstanding safety records of Metro vehicle maintenance workers and bus and train operators. In addition, the authority saluted employees who reached 25-years of employment with the NFTA.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Celebrating Earth Day

To help recognize and celebrate the important initiatives companies, schools and community groups undertook on behalf of Earth Week 2012, NFTA-Metro sponsored five Good Going Awards. They were presented at D’arcy McGee’s Irish Pub during an Earth Week celebration to support the important work that is being done in the areas of alternative transportation, sustainable food movement, environmental stewardship, moving toward zero waste and obtaining carbon neutrality in our lives.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

From the driver's seat to the pulpit

Veteran Metro bus operator Tommy C. Seay Sr. was featured in the PeopleTalk section of The Buffalo News this past Sunday. Congratulations to Tommy on a wonderful and enlightening story.

Click here to read the entire article.

Photo by Derek Gee / Buffalo News.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Niagara Falls Airport adds Florida flights


Allegiant Air has announced new Florida flights to Fort Lauderdale beginning July 1.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Transit Police Officers Honored

On Sunday March 25TH, 2012 the Cheektowaga Police Department held its annual awards banquet to recognize its members for their outstanding professional standards and achievements.

Friday, March 9, 2012

New Rail Cars Roll Out






































Rebuilt Metro Rail Cars 114 and 123 carried their first passengers Friday, March 9. The special guests included contest winners from the community, Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown and Giancarlo Fantappiè, President and CEO of AnsaldoBreda, the company reconstructing the vehicles.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Transit Police Awards






On March 5, the NFTA hosted an awards ceremony for the Transit Authority Police Department, paying tribute to the officers who have excelled in protecting the traveling public over the past year.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Delta, Buffalo and the Big Apple





Delta Airlines just increased its flights from the Buffalo Niagara International Airport to New York City by 42%. The new all-jet service takes off March 25 with larger planes and available first-class and WiFi access.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Frontier’s Firefighter of the Year

Rob Siegel, Helper at Frontier Station, has been honored as the Ellwood Volunteer Fire Company’s Firefighter of the Year for his actions this past summer. Rob drove home the night of July 20, after his shift, and noticed a house on fire. As the next-door home ignited, Rob alerted everyone inside. He ended up saving Gail Keil, an Administration Analyst at Metro’s Cold Spring facility, and her husband, from injury or worse.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Brian G. Chapman



Bus Operator, and Extra Clerk, Brian G. Chapman was shot and killed Wed. Feb. 1 outside his home in Buffalo. Brian, age 39, worked out of Cold Spring and is survived by Rail Controller Brian Chapman Sr.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

BNIA Ambassador Receives Presidential Award



BNIA Volunteer Hospitality Ambassador Bill Hale has been awarded the Presidential Volunteer Service Award, the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation’s highest honor.

Bill, a Lockport native, began volunteering at BNIA in January 2007. To date, he’s put in 5,000 hours helping people get in, out and around Western New York.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Metro History 101




Executive Director Kimberley Minkel spoke at the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library downtown Jan 10, as part of an on-going lecture series. Her talk covered the history of public transportation on the Niagara Frontier, dating back to 1825 and the opening of the Erie Canal.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Message from the Executive Director


Dear Metro Customer:

Today the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority and its Metro Bus and Rail system is at a crossroads. How we navigate this crossroad going forward will affect the lives of thousands of people in Buffalo Niagara. read more