The buses travel in express lanes on First and Second Avenues, but much of the timesavings is to come from sidewalk kiosk ticketing. When boarding the bus, passengers simply present a receipt rather than swiping a MetroCard or paying with exact change, a change that perplexed many early riders, reports Michael Gynbaum. The city hopes the practice will eventually reduce what is currently a 90-minute trip by 15 minutes.
'Traffic was predictably light on Sunday, and most passengers, asked if the bus was traveling faster than usual, said they could not make a meaningful comparison. The true test will probably come on Tuesday, the first full-fledged workday after the Columbus Day holiday, when the rush-hour crowds descend.'
The new system is the first for Manhattan but not for the city as a whole. Similar changes along a busy route in the Bronx improved travel times by 20 percent.