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Is N.Y.C.’s 14th Street Busway the Future of Transportation?

The success of the busway project could point to a longer-term shift away from planning and design strategies that favor cars.
February 9, 2020, 5am PST | Camille Fink
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Marc A. Hermann / MTA New York City Transit

"The 14th Street Busway in New York City is a great case study in why drivers shouldn’t fight funding for transit—but should support it for their own good," writes Patrick Sisson.

Sisson reviews outcomes of the busway, including faster bus travel times and minimal impacts on car travel times as well as mode shifts in the area. "During its short existence so far, the Busway has boosted bus ridership 24 percent on weekdays and 30 percent on weekends. The impact has spilled over to Citi Bike, the city’s bike-share network; there’s been a 17 percent increase in bike usage on 14th Street during the morning commute, and ridership has also jumped on new protected bike lanes on 12th and 13th streets."

Over the long term, infrastructure like the 14th Street Busway benefits all road users. For one, the increase in transit ridership means fewer cars on city streets. "And while some drivers might not like the idea of sharing road space with buses, busways offer an incredibly cost-effective mass transit solution compared to light rail or subways," says Sisson.

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Published on Thursday, January 23, 2020 in Curbed
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