December 7, 2020. The local public bus agency hoped to open a natural gas fueling station for its buses and the public last year, but the project probably won’t happen now until 2022, the agency’s leader said.

County of Lackawanna Transit System Executive Director Robert Fiume attributed the delay to a change in the acquisition of land and an expansion of plans for an upgrade of COLTS headquarters on North-South Road.

COLTS will eventually shift to all natural gas buses as part of Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf’s statewide drive to have 29 mass transit agencies open stations to encourage more gas use.

The state signed an $84.5 million, 20-year contract in 2016 with Chicago-based Trillium CNG to design, build, finance and operate compressed natural gas fueling stations for 25 public transit agencies across the state.

So far, 18 agencies have opened stations to fuel their buses, public vehicles or both, according to a state Department of Transportation news release.

COLTS plans to have natural gas stations for both. Originally, PennDOT’s schedule for the stations had COLTS opening in 2017. Fiume always found that optimistic and hoped for 2018, but the acquisition of land problems delayed that, first until 2019 and now until 2022.