History of Transit in the Harrisburg Area

Looking Back ……

The “little” bus company on the West Shore – known as Valley Transportation Company was, perhaps, in its heyday in 1951.  That period of growth and development occurred after the previous owners sold the company after Valley had lost much of the public’s confidence and patronage.

The person solely responsible for breathing new life into Valley was Joseph G. Succa, the son of John G. Succa. John Succa was the General Manager for two large private bus companies on Long Island and saw an opportunity for his son, Joe, to have his own operation – hence the purchase of Valley.

Although World War II had been over for nearly 6 years the Valley fleet was operating a number of vehicles in its 40 plus fleet which had been built in the 1930’s.  Average engine life was 40,000 miles and breakdowns were commonplace.

Young Mr. Succa, with his broad “bus family” background quickly took a “hands on approach” to every aspect for the Company and by the end of his first year at the helm had almost completely turned the firm around to be a real public servant and asset to the growing West Shore communities.

Most of the 1930’s vintage vehicles were retired, sold, or, simply, scrapped – he built a fleet of modern buses (with a few selected pre-World War vehicles used for tripper service) – had them painted and started  a “polish and wax” program aimed at doing one bus every two working days….!

The “new” look public minded Valley Transportation became a model suburban system thanks to the Succa influence.  The photo, circa 1951, shows a portion of the fleet in the large Valley garage at 829 State /Lemoyne.

Valley faded into transit history when it became a part of the CAT route network but the basis for many of the West Shore operation can be traced back to the “Succa era.”