How Is Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Different From Busses

A new report discusses the six elements that distinguish BRT from regular bus systems.
November 7, 2004, 7am PST | Chris Steins | @urbaninsight
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The Federal Transit Administration has released a guide designed to give transit operators, planners, and local decision makers assistance when considering Bus Rapid Transit as an option for local transportation needs.

From the report abstract: The report is intended to support evaluation of bus rapid transit concepts as one of many options during the initial project planningand development. This report presents a comprehensive summary of applications of BRT elements in the United States and inselected sites around the world. Information on the first wave of BRT projects to be implemented in the United States is presentedto show the broad range of applications of key elements of BRT – running ways, stations, vehicles, fare collection, intelligenttransportation systems (ITS), and service and operating plans. This report also presents performance of BRT systems anddiscusses how combinations of BRT elements contribute to transit system performance, including reducing travel times, improvingreliability, providing identity and a quality image, improving safety and security, and increasing capacity. Some important benefits ofintegrated BRT systems are presented, including transportation system benefits (increasing ridership, and improving capital costeffectiveness and operating efficiency) and community benefits (transit-supportive development and environmental quality).

The report also examines elements of ten existing BRT systems in the United States: Silver Line, Boston, MA; Neighborhood Express, Chicago, CA; CityExpress!, Honolulu, HI; MAX, Las Vegas, NV; Metro Rapid, Los Angeles, CA; South Dade Busway, Miami-Dade, FL; Rapid Bus San Pablo Corridor, Oakland, CA; LYMMO, Orlando, FL; Busways (West, East and South), Pittsburgh, PA; Rapid, Phoenix, AZ

Thanks to Chris Steins

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Published on Saturday, November 6, 2004 in Transportation Research Board
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