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Brt

Transportation Nation

Bus Rapid Transit Gets its Day at the County Fair

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

WAMU

Montgomery County (MD) politicians and transit advocates showed off what they hope will be a solution to the region's traffic congestion at the county agricultural fairgrounds on Monday: a bus.

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Transportation Nation

Tappan Zee Bridge Needs Bus Rapid Transit: Panel

Friday, February 28, 2014

When the currently under construction Tappan Zee Bridge opens for business in 2018, it should have seven new bus rapid transit lines—and eventually plan to reboot rail service in the Rockland County area.

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Transportation Nation

NYC Council Bill Calls for Citywide Bus Rapid Transit Network

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

WNYC

New York City's transit authority has introduced five Select Bus Service routes in recent years and proposed more than 20 others, but that's not enough for some supporters of faster buses who want to use legislation to speed the city's adoption of Bus Rapid Transit.

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Transportation Nation

Following Public Pressure, Metro Will Add More Bus Service to DC's Busiest Corridor

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Commuters at 16th and U Streets NW

Commuters at 16th and U Streets NW

Additional morning rush hour service is coming to Metro’s busiest bus corridor in Washington after the Dupont Circle Advisory Neighborhood Commission took commuters’ complaints to the transit authority.

The S bus line on 16th Street NW, a historic gateway into downtown D.C., is struggling to meet ridership demand. Buses are often packed before reaching the southern stretch of the route and cannot squeeze additional passengers aboard, leaving rush hour commuters waiting in long lines at bus stops in Columbia Heights, Adams Morgan, and near Dupont Circle. Some commuters eventually give up and hop in taxis.

“I went out to the bus stops and I saw taxicabs pull up to the long lines, seeing a business opportunity and offering to take them downtown, because the buses weren’t working for our city,” says Kishan Putta, a commissioner on the Dupont Circle ANC.

Putta tried to solicit commuters’ concerns on Facebook and Twitter but drew his largest response the old fashioned way: he put up posters at bus stops asking commuters to contact him.

“We took those stories and those complaints to Metro and they agreed to meet us,” in January, Putta says. “They had to admit in public this is a big problem.”

Putta provided the following example of a typical commuter complaint about crowding on the S line.

“I actively chose to walk 45 minutes to work during every day this week rather than take the bus despite the temperatures in the teens and howling winds,” the commuter’s complaint said. “On the one day when I decided it would be better for my health and well-being to take the bus I waited at the bus stop for 20 minutes.”

“Just this week it has taken me 45-50 minutes to get from 16th & V to 14th & I, and anywhere from 4 to 6 buses have passed the stop each morning because they are too crowded to accept any more passengers,” another complaint said.

Metro has been aware of S line bus crowding for years but its efforts haven’t kept up with growing ridership. In 2009 the S9, which makes limited stops on 16th Street NW, was added during morning and evening rush hours to alleviate crowding.

“Bus ridership remains strong especially with all the new residents moving into the district,” says Metro spokesman Dan Stessel. “There are new residential units along this corridor and so we want to make sure we are providing service for the folks who want it.”

Stessel says Metro has yet to decide on a name for the new S service, but says it will begin on Monday, March 25. An additional bus will arrive at 16th Street and Harvard NW every 12 minutes from 7:30 to 9:15 weekday mornings. A total of nine additional trips will go down 16th Street, then left on I St to 14th Street. Then the buses will head back to Columbia Road NW. The extra capacity will carry between 400 and 500 commuters on a busy morning.

“This issue didn’t just crop up two months ago. We’ve been working on the S line and broader issues related to the S line for more than a year now,” Stessel says. “That said, the relationship we’ve had over the last two months with the ANC has been nothing but constructive.”

“I will take my hat off to Metro,” says Putta. “They were responsive. We worked together on coming up with possible options.”

Still no answer to 16th Street traffic

Putta concedes that while the additional morning rush hour bus service will help move commuters south on 16th Street, the district faces a bigger task in mitigating the corridor’s notorious traffic congestion.

“As with a lot of these long-term solutions, you would need to do a transition so that you would hopefully get less people driving. And of course, the physical limitations of the road are definitely an issue,” says Putta, referring to the possibility of creating a bus-only lane on 16th Street during rush hour.

Metro’s Stessel says the transit authority is working on a solution.

“It’s an ongoing dialogue that we have not only with DDOT but with all of the jurisdictions,” Stessel says. “A major milestone will be achieved about a year from now when we launch what is true BRT (bus rapid transit) in the region for the first time. That will be on the Virginia side of the river in partnership with Alexandria and Arlington.”

The Route 1 Transitway will run buses every six minutes in dedicated lanes from Braddock Road in Arlington north to Crystal City.

“We hope that will spark other jurisdictions to consider, if not true BRT, perhaps traffic signal prioritization or more bus lanes,” says Stessel. “From a public policy perspective, if you have a vehicle that has 50 people in it, that really should get priority over a car that has one person in it.”

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Transportation Nation

Put Away That MetroCard: No Transit Fares in NY on Thursday, Friday

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Flooding at the South Ferry subway station (photo courtesy of NY MTA)

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday night that he was "declaring a transportation emergency" and authorized the MTA to waive fares on subways, buses, and rail lines through Friday.

Cuomo said that decision was prompted in part by the grueling traffic in Manhattan on Wednesday. He called the gridlock "dangerous" and said he wanted to encourage people to use transit.

But the subway system that will be up and running Thursday will not be the system New Yorkers are used to. Only 14 of the 23 lines will be operational, and even those will be running in segments. LIRR service is being slowly phased back in. Cuomo said one bright point was that roughly 50% of regular customers would have normal service on the Metro-North commuter rail line.

"Bear with us," said MTA head Joe Lhota, who was seated next to the governor at the last-minute press conference. He called the damage done by Hurricane Sandy the "most devastating event ever to happen to the MTA."

There are still subway tunnels flooded with water from "floor to ceiling," said Cuomo. Beginning Thursday, the Army Corps of Engineers will begin deploying 250 "high-speed pumping devices" to aid water removal. These will be operated around the clock until the tunnels are clear.

Meanwhile, to shuttle passengers between Brooklyn and Manhattan, the MTA will put 330 buses into service to act as a bus bridge. Late Wednesday night the New York City Department of Transportation released more details about how the bus lanes will be structured. DOT spokesman Seth Solomonow said the city was creating a "surface subway."

Starting at 6am tomorrow -- timed to coincide with the start of the subway -- buses will operate over Manhattan Bridge via a two-way bus lane on the lower level. These bus-only lanes will be operational 24/7 and will be enforced by the NYPD. Buses will also go over the Williamsburg Bridge. In both cases, buses will make major stops on their way uptown via the Bowery and Third Avenue along a dedicated curbside lane -- which he said will also be enforced by the NYPD.

The buses will run up to 55th Street, then turn around and head back to Brooklyn on Lexington Avenue.

For more information about transit service in New York, visit our Transit Tracker.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Transportation Nation

NYC to Speed Travel to LaGuardia by Bus -- But did the Mayor know?

Thursday, October 11, 2012

(Photo CC by Flickr user Stephen Rees)

Here's a little insight into how New York City Hall works....

A press release went out from the mayor's office Thursday morning in which Mayor Bloomberg announced faster bus service to LaGuardia Airport beginning next year.

The bus is a so-called "select bus," now up and running in several New York boroughs.  The buses have their own lanes, off-board payment, signal priority at red lights, and other enhancements to give passengers a speedier ride.

Bloomberg has pioneered their use -- called "Bus Rapid Transit" in places like Bogota, Colombia, where the buses have their own, physically segregated lanes -- in New York City.

The Mayor was quoted prominently in the press release, saying that the new "select bus service" lines, would cut travel time, and help both airport workers and flyers.

But when Bloomberg gave a news conference later in the day, and a reporter asked him to comment about the plan, he had a hard time answering the question.

"I love select buses. I didn't know there was one. I'll have them talk to you. It's a great idea. But I just don't know - Is there an issue with it?," the Mayor said.

The reporter told him his office put out a news release about it.

"Good," Bloomberg continued. "I was on a plane, so I didn't read it. Okay. Love to help you but I can't read everything."

A spokesman for the mayor said the release was issued because the select bus service plan was mentioned Wednesday evening at a community event. He said the mayor was aware of the bus plan, but not that a press release was going out about it.

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Transportation Nation

TN Moving Stories: Houston Gets Bike Share, In London's Mayoral Race, It's All About the Bikes, GM CEO Defends SUVs and Tsunami Motorcycle Washes Up on Canadian

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Poor Die More in Car Crashes (Link)

LaHood Convenes Meeting on To Save Dulles Silver Line (Link)as Pressure Grows to Drop Project Labor Agreement (Link)

As Fuel Prices Dip, So Does Fuel Economy in New Cars  (Link)

NY Officials to Add Barriers, Speed Monitoring to Stretch of Parkway Where 7 Died (Link)

NY, 44 Cities Blow Through Smog Standards (Link)

Montana Now One of Eight States That Can Instantly Verify Liability Insurance (Link)

New York's Comptroller Says He'll Block New "Taxi of Tomorrow" Contract Because the New Cabs Aren't Accessible (Link)

West Wing Fanatics, They Reunited the Cast...and Produced This: (Link)

Kate's Photo Essay on All The Things Germany has that You Don't: Fast Trains with Bike Cars, Plenty of Space for Parking Your Bike, Cool Trams (Link)

Houston's Bike Share (photo; Imelda via flickr)

 

CEO of GM, Dan Akerson, Defends SUVS, Bailout, in Chat with The Takeaway's Celeste Headlee (The Takeaway)

Vancouver's Bus Rapid Transit Greenlighted (The Columbian)

Houston Bike Share Pilot Launches (ahead of NY, SF & Chicago!) (Houston Chronicle)

London's Mayoral Race: It's all About the Bikes...And the Trains (in Shakespearean terms, no less) (NPR)

Benefactor will Fund Transit For Needy Boy Who Got An Agent Fired For Giving Free Rides (SF Chronicle)

SpaceX Rocket Launch Delayed (WMFE)

Chicago's New Red Line Depends on Transpo Bill (Chicago Tribune)

Business Big: Those Who Want Transit on Tappan Zee Either Ignorant or "Pure Obstructionists" (LoHud.com)

You Can't Get There From Here -- the NY Times Looks at How Hard it is to Get Between Smaller Cities (NY Times) and Other Ways Business Travel is Hell (NY Times)

And....Motorcycle Washed Away in Japanese Tsuanami Washes Up on Candian Island 4000 Miles Away (Fuji TV via Boston Globe)

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Transportation Nation

BRT Systems Getting an International Rating Standard

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Now it can be told:  there are objective standards for measuring how good your Bus Rapid Transit system is.  The Institute for Transportation Development Policy has issued new scoring system to see how good BRT systems around the world are.

Among the criteria for making a good BRT -- off board payment, segregated bus lanes, level boarding, and good integration with biknig and walking.

The scorecard will rank BRT corridors as Gold, Silver or Bronze Standard -- apparently every BRT deserves a medal. A BRT Standard committee will confer the rankings on bus systems akin to the Green Building Council bestowing different LEED level certifications.

2012 is a pilot year to test the scorecard.

Last year ITDP did a more informal ranking of systems worldwide. Bogota's got a 93.  New York, the lowest rated system, got a 35.

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Transportation Nation

Emanuel Pushes Audacious Plan for Chicago Infrastructure

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, speaking earlier this month (photo by U.S. Army Public Affairs, Midwest)

Fixing infrastructure has bedeviled cash-strapped cities in recent years. Washington has failed to pass a comprehensive surface transportation bill, last summer's debt deal paved the way for spending reductions, Republican governors have cancelled big rail projects, and the public has been generally sour on big spending deals.

With the announcement of a $7 billion infrastructure plan, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is signalling that era may be ending.

"The Mayor's basic premise is he's not going to let the city twist in the wind at the whim of the federal or state governments," said Tom Alexander, an Emanuel spokesman.

With funding from water rate hikes, efficiencies, and --mostly -- private banks setting up an "infrastructure trust" to finance projects, Emanuel plans to fund a $1.4 billion improvement in O'Hare airport, 16 new miles of bus rapid transit, and repair 100 CTA stations.

Also on deck:  $660 million for public schools, 180 new acres of parkland, the replacement of 900 miles of water pipe, and the completion of the Bloomingdale Trail -- the Chicago version of the High Line.

According to the press release:  the program, called Building a New Chicago, "is one of the most comprehensive infrastructure plans in Chicago’s history, involving an unprecedented level of coordination between City Hall, multiple city departments and sister agencies, private sector utilities, and the public."

Other big city mayors, notably New York's Michael Bloomberg and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, have championed big infrastructure projects.  Mayor Bloomberg is a co-founder of Building America's Future, a pro-infrastructure lobbying group. But neither mayor has the extensive control of Mayor Emanuel, who runs the transit system, schools, and water infrastructure. In New York, for example the MTA is run by the state.

"A lot of American cities are focused on what's happening in Chicago," said Robert Puentes, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution Metropolitan Policy Program. "There's nothing really like this -- we don't know all of what this is -- but there is so much interest.  I really expect other cities to replicate it if it's a success."

The Mayor's office hasn't fully explained all the financing, but in one part of the plan, major banks including JP Morgan Chase and Citibank are investing in more energy-efficient buildings.  Those efficiencies will be used to produce savings, which in turn can be used to pay back the investors.

Marcia Hale, president of Building America's Future, praised Emanuel's plan, and called out the Senate for passing a transportation bill "that would erect barriers to states and cities seeking to collaborate with the private sector."  (The Senate bill has not passed the House; on Thursday, both houses of Congress passed a 90-day extension of the existing bill, the ninth such extension.)

Chicago has not fully laid out the details of its financing plan, other than to say it won't rely on tax hikes.

The city did release a video explanation of the plan:

Here's the full  release:

Mayor Emanuel today announced a $7 billion, three year infrastructure program, Building a New Chicago, which is one of the largest investments in infrastructure in the City’s history.  The program will touch nearly every aspect of the city’s infrastructure network and create more than 30,000 jobs over the next three years.

“Whether it is renewing our parks or repairing our pipes, repaving our roads or rebuilding our rails, retrofitting our buildings or revitalizing our bridges, we must restore Chicago’s core,” said Mayor Emanuel. “Our plans are comprehensive because our needs are comprehensive -- because no city in America relies on its infrastructure more than Chicago.  While our infrastructure challenges are not unique, our resolve and determination to see them through is. I look forward to rebuilding our city’s infrastructure so we may continue to lead in the 21st century.”

Mayor Emanuel made the announcement at Chicagoland Laborers’ Training and Apprentice Center, in the city’s Austin neighborhood.

The investments will not require increases in taxes. Many of the projects are paid for through reforms, efficiencies, cuts in central offices, direct user fees, and the recently announced Chicago Infrastructure Trust. 

The improvements in Building a New Chicago will include:

  • Renovation, repair, or rebuilding of more than 100 CTA stations
  • The creation of the first 16 miles of Bus Rapid Transit Route on Jeffrey Boulevard, with future routes being developed for the Central Loop.
  • A $1.4 billion investment in O’Hare airport over the next three years, creating 5,900 jobs, including opening two new runways by 2015.
  • A five-year, $290 million capital plan for the City’s parks  that will include the acquisition of 180 new acres of parklands, and the building of 20 new playgrounds and 12 new parks.
  • The 2014 completion of the Bloomingdale trail.
  • The completion of two new boathouses this year on the Chicago River, with two new boathouses next year.
  • The replacement of 900 miles of century-old water pipe, the repair of 750 miles of sewer line, and the reconstruction of 160,000 catch-basins.
  • The reform of the Aldermanic Menu, and tax increment financing, so that these tools better match the city’s infrastructure needs.
  • A $660 million investment in Chicago Public Schools, and a $479 million investment in the City Colleges of Chicago, to create modern educational environments that will propel our students into the jobs of tomorrow.
  • “Retrofit Chicago,” a $225 million dollar effort to retrofit City buildings, reducing their energy consumption by 25 percent and creating 900 jobs in the next three years, the first project funded by the Chicago Infrastructure Trust.

Building a New Chicago brings a new level of coordination to the City’s capital investment process, maximizing efficiency, stretching scarce resources and minimizing impacts on residents.

The full speech, as prepared for delivery, is attached here.

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Transportation Nation

Chicago Approves Big Bucks for BRT

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

WBEZ's Chip Mitchell reports that Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is steering $7.3 million towards a long promised bus rapid transit route downtown where half of commuters currently travel by bus. As we reported at the time of his election, Emanuel's transportation plan is largely a transit plan filled with bold promises for intelligent transportation systems.

WBEZ on the latest BRT announcement:

"Emanuel’s mayoral transition plan last year promised a “full bus rapid transit pilot” within three years. The pilot, according to the plan, will include “dedicated bus lanes, signal preemption, prepaid boarding or on-board fare verification, multiple entry and exits points on the buses, limited stops, and street-level boarding.”

"The Chicago Department of Transportation is keeping lips tight about its design of the downtown line, known as both the “East-West Transit Corridor” and “Central Loop BRT.” It’s not clear the design will include many of the timesavers listed in Emanuel’s plan. A CDOT plan announced in 2010 would remove cars from some traffic lanes, rig key stoplights to favor the buses, improve sidewalks, install bicycle lanes and build specially branded bus stops equipped with GPS-powered “next bus” arrival signs.

Chicago is also slated to get $24.6 million in federal money for the BRT plan. For details on the route and other bus upgrades, go to WBEZ.

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Transportation Nation

TN MOVING STORIES: California's Governor Says Cap-and-Trade Will Fund Bullet Trains, Lots of Christie Loyalists Work at Port Authority

Monday, January 30, 2012

Top stories on TN: House Republicans intend to use their upcoming highway and infrastructure bill to push for approval of the Keystone XL oil sands pipeline.  Congressman John Mica says he will unveil a major five-year transportation bill to allow more public private partnerships to expand the capacity of interstate highways. Transportation Nation got a fan-composed jingle. Florida's SunRail commuter line broke ground. And: everything you ever wanted to know about biking in the Bay Area.

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Repairing DC streetcar tracks, 1941. (photo courtesy of Farm Security Administration - Office of War Information Photograph Collection via Wikimedia Commons)

Patronage at the Port Authority? Dozens of people with ties to NJ Governor Christie have been hired at the agency. (The Record)

California governor Jerry Brown calls $100 billion high-speed rail estimates "way off," and says cap-and-trade will help fund the program. (Sacramento Bee)

Bus rapid transit may come to Nashville (The Tennessean) and Des Moines (Des Moines Register).

California's low-carbon fuel rule has become embroiled in a fierce public battle and has been barred from being enforced. (Washington Post)

Streetcars will roll out once again in DC in 2013 -- so it's time for a look back at the District's system, 50 years ago. (Washington Post)

San Francisco has removed public seating from almost the entire city to discourage the homeless from using it. (Bay Citizen)

A rail transit hub in downtown Minneapolis that officials want to begin building this year will go up for public review this week. (Star Tribune)

Trading places: London police are running safety events which give bicyclists the chance to experience exactly what a truck driver can -- and can't -- see. (The Guardian)

NYT Economix blog: the way to unsnarl city traffic -- especially in the face of more taxis on the streets -- is congestion pricing. (New York Times)

In New Jersey, toll cheat violations have dropped from 9 percent to 3 percent since photo enforcement began to target scofflaws in the exact change lanes on the Garden State Parkway. (AP via NJ.com)

A Basque company wants to manufacture an electric car that folds upward when parked. (The Economist)

Is President Obama's 2005 Chrysler worth $1 million? (The Takeaway)

A journalist whose bike was stolen -- twice -- puts technology to use for a sting operation. (Outside)

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Transportation Nation

TN MOVING STORIES: NYC Mayor Backing #7 Subway to Secaucus Plan, BP Profits Triple, BRT to Michigan?

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Top stories on TN:

Mitt Romney is making President Obama's support for two high-end green car companies a campaign issue. (Link)

The first Mexican truck has crossed the US border. (Link)

Formula 1 racing is coming to NJ. (Link)

Waiting for a bus on Staten Island (photo by johnpignata via Flickr)

But: is NY making its own "ARC mistake" by killing transit on the bridge? (Second Avenue Sagas)

And: the lack of transit drew criticism at a Tappan Zee public comment session. (Journal News)

Real-time bus arrival information will come to Staten Island by the end of the year. (Staten Island Advance)

A Maryland panel recommended a gas tax hike, fare increases and an end to transit raids to fund state transportation projects. (Baltimore Sun)

The NY Post reports that Mayor Michael Bloomberg will be announcing plans to move forward on extending the No. 7 subway to New Jersey.

The Port Authority will raise the Bayonne Bridge by 2016. (NorthJersey.com)

Michigan's governor wants to jump start a regional transit system in Detroit with bus rapid transit. (Detroit Free Press)

NYC taxi update: the city will crackdown on the $350 no-honking-except-in-an-emergency rule (WNYC).  And the Taxi and Limousine Commission is surveying passengers about their cab rides (NY Daily News).

Boeing's Dreamliner made its maiden voyage after a three-year delay. (Guardian)

18 months after the massive oil spill in the Gulf, BP stages a comeback: company profits have tripled. (Marketplace)

Reporters complain about the Acela, continue to ride it. (Politico)

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Transportation Nation

TN Moving Stories: BRT On The Rise -- But Not Everyone's a Fan; Mica Wants Reauthorization Bill ASAP

Monday, May 23, 2011

Select Bus Service on Manhattan's East Side (photo by Kate Hinds)

Bus rapid transit systems are on the rise, but not everyone is a fan. (Wall Street Journal, Globe and Mail)

Amtrak is seeking private investors for its Northeast Corridor high-speed rail line. (The Hill)

California's high-speed rail authority is disputing bills from Caltrain that are worth more than $108,000. (San Francisco Examiner)

Rep. John Mica's opinion piece in today's Politico: "Congress must act now" on transportation reauthorization legislation.

San Francisco's cabbies want their fares in cash instead of credit cards (Bay Citizen via New York Times). Meanwhile, NYC livery cab owners are fighting the city's outer-borough medallion plan (WNYC).

New York City Deputy Mayor Howard Wolfson, a supporter of the city's bike lanes, gives a reporter a taste of his two-wheeled commute. (New York Times)

Maryland's governor signed a bill forbidding a French government-operated company from competing to run that state's commuter trains, because of the company's activities during the Holocaust. (Washington Post)

The NY Daily News blames Mayor Bloomberg for not doing enough for the city's transit.

Boston unveils three electric car charging stations today. (Boston Herald)

Riders at two Brooklyn F and G train stations have their stations back -- for now. (WNYC)

Follow Transportation Nation on Twitter.

In case you missed it on Transportation Nation:

-- the Yankees' parking garage is losing money, plus it displaced a public park (link)

-- cab sharing on tap for this year's US Open (link)

-- bike commuting in Houston? You betcha. (link)

-- carpooling in Houston? Yep, especially as gas prices fluctuate (link)

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Transportation Nation

Emanuel's Transition Report: More Bikes, BRT, Transit, Safety

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

(Andrea Bernstein, Transportation Nation)  Mayor-Elect Rahm Emanuel is out with his transition report, and it's got lots to dig into for transpo addicts:  proposals for more street safety (p 29), where pedestrian safety actually comes before street patrols (p 30), for a "world-class" bike network (p 37), more high quality public space (p 40),  and, under a section called "OUR GROWTH,"  calls to "improve and expand Chicago's transit system...develop bus rapid transit, support transit-oriented development" and " accelerate infrastructure projects that are critical to regional growth."

What do you think?

Follow Transportation Nation on Twitter.

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Transportation Nation

Montgomery County, Maryland, Gets Closer to Having a True BRT System

Thursday, May 05, 2011

(Montgomery County, MD -- Matt Bush, WAMU)  Council members in Montgomery County, Md., received an update on plans to build Bus Rapid Transit lines in the county this week. The price tag for the plan is high, but at least one County Council member says it must be built because Montgomery County is losing the transit battle with its neighbors.

Bus Rapid Transit: 'Not Your Father's Bus' On Randolph Road, the Bus Rapid Transit route would go from the White Flint Metrorail station to the Glenmont Metrorail station. Courtesy of: Matt Bush View more images from this gallery.

The proposed bus lines aren't the traditional routes you see now. They would be rapid buses that would use county roads but have their own lanes, so stopping because of traffic would be minimal.

And the buses look different too. They're low to the ground, resembling something that looks more like a rail car, according to Michael Flood, with the consulting firm Parsons Brinckerhoff.

"It's not your father's bus. It's not the bus many of us have known. It's a sleek vehicle," he says.

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Transportation Nation

SF MUNI Faces $1.6 Billion Deficit, But Big Projects Get a Federal Boost

Thursday, February 17, 2011

(San Francisco–Casey Miner, KALW News) It's a truism well-known in transportation circles that it's much easier for transit agencies to get money for new projects than it is to find cash for ongoing operations and maintenance. Here in the Bay Area we've got several big expansions on in the works, despite the fact that all of our transit agencies face ongoing cash-flow problems.

President Obama's proposed federal budget includes hundreds of millions of dollars for the Bay Area, including money for SF Muni to move forward on two big projects : $200 million to build the Central Subway from downtown up through Chinatown, and $30 million to build BRT on Van Ness Avenue. Both projects are also depending on additional federal grants.

But there's a wrinkle.

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Transportation Nation

Guangzhou Wins ITDP Sustainable Transit Award

Monday, January 24, 2011

(Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

[UPDATED] (Alex Goldmark, Transportation Nation) The 2011 Sustainable Transport Award goes to Guangzhou, China in large part for a successful and highly popular bus rapid transit system that integrates with bike lanes, bike share and metro stations, "raising the bar for all cities" according to the Institute for Transportation Development Policy that gives the award every year.

Here's the ITDP write up on the city's BRT system, which carries 800,000 people each day.

Accepting the award, Lu Yuan, a Guangzhou government official said, "It is a big honor to win this award ... and in the future we will continue to grow green transportation" systems to create a "sustainable, low-carbon and happy Guangzhou."

The other cities in contention for the prize were: Tehran, Iran (which inadvertently caused a minor international incident); Leon, Guanajuato, Mexico; Lima, Peru; and Nantes, France. Previous winners include Ahmedebad, India; Bogota, Colombia; and New York City.

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Transportation Nation

TN Moving Stories: What's the Likelihood of the 7-Subway-to-Secaucus, Exxon Mobil to Clean Up Greenpoint Oil Spill, and Happy Anniversary, 150-year-old Bike Sho

Thursday, November 18, 2010

New York's current lieutenant governor, Richard Ravitch, will release a report today that lays out the transportation challenges facing incoming governor Andrew Cuomo. Such as: failing to come up with a long-term plan to fund transportation infrastructure "means surrendering any plausible chance for a prosperous future for New York." (Wall Street Journal)

Bus Rapid Transit debuts in Atlanta. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Exxon Mobil agrees to clean-up a multimillion gallon, underground oil spill that has vexed Greenpoint (Brooklyn) residents for decades. (WNYC)

Fiat returns to the U.S. auto market (NPR).  The base model costs $15,500.

You may want to temper your #7 subway-to-Secaucus hopes. According to the New York Daily News: "The chances of a subway line running to New Jersey anytime soon hover between slim and none, a top transportation official said Wednesday."

Besides: MTA head Jay Walder says they can't afford a fourth "megaproject." (AM New York)

NJ Transit may privatize parking at some locations. "Under the SPACES (System Parking Amenity and Capacity Enhancement Strategy) initiative, firms would vie for the exclusive right to collect parking revenues at the sites throughout the decades-long agreement." (The Times of Trenton)

Faces of Distracted Driving launches -- an online video series featuring people who have been killed or lost loved ones. (New York Times)

The world's oldest bicycle shop, located in Surrey, England, is marking its 150th anniversary. (Your Local Guardian)

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Transportation Nation

SERIES: BRT (as in Bus Rapid Transit)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

BRT in Colombia (photo by Gabriel Mendoza Ardila)

Folks, these aren't new, but a reader requested the WNYC series on BRT from 2009.  And if you're interested in transit models from around the world, the stories still hold.

Bogota, Cleveland, Los AngelesThe Bronx

And: a bonus interview with Enrique Penalosa.

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Transportation Nation

SERIES: Is Bus Rapid Transit The Solution to Transit's Fiscal Woes?

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

The HealthLine rapid transit bus in Cleveland.

Demand for public transportation is rising, but transit authorities across the nation are facing budget cuts. Many cities are testing rapid transit buses, which are hundreds of millions of dollars cheaper than rail lines. Reporter Dan Bobkoff takes a ride on Cleveland's HealthLine Rapid Transit Bus.  The story is here.

And you can see and hear the whole Marketplace series on the Future of Transportation here.

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