TSTC’s website now includes an online clearinghouse of information on bus rapid transit, a transit mode which can combine rail’s speed and reliability with buses’ service flexibility and is being explored throughout the region. The clearinghouse explains what bus rapid transit (BRT) is, how it compares to other modes, how it can be implemented in suburban and urban contexts, and how it can anchor transit-oriented development. The clearinghouse will continue to be updated.
Tri-State has argued that BRT is the ideal transit mode for the 30-mile Tappan Zee Bridge/I-287 corridor, because its flexibility allows it to better serve suburban areas. Indeed, in the 2004 Alternatives Analysis, the Tappan Zee study team projected that full corridor (Suffern-Port Chester) BRT would attract 42,000 daily east-west riders, compared to 24,000 for full corridor commuter rail. (As MTR reported yesterday, the Tappan Zee study now includes additional BRT options.)
In Connecticut, ConnDOT has opted to run bus rapid transit in a 9.4-mile busway between Hartford and New Britain. The project is currently in the final design stage.
Bus rapid transit is also being studied in New York City, Newark, and Westchester County. These studies focus on less infrastructure-intensive measures, such as on-street lanes and traffic signal priority, that can improve inter-city and commuter bus services. In NYC, the COMM.U.T.E. coalition of community and environmental justice groups has pushed for bus rapid transit, funded with the revenues from congestion pricing, as a way to speed long commutes for outer-borough residents.