CTA and CDOT Unveil Proposed Designs for Central Loop BRT Corridor

Author: John Greenfield

Chicago just got a step closer to first-class bus rapid transit. Today the CTA and the Chicago Department of Transportation released proposed lane configurations for the Central Loop East-West Transit Corridor, a downtown circulator route connecting Union Station with Navy Pier, as well as renderings for a new transit center next to the train station. The corridor would include bus-priority lanes on two miles of streets: Canal, Washington, Madison and Clinton. This downtown BRT service is slated to launch next year.

The Loop BRT corridor would also serve the Ogilvie Transportation Center and multiple CTA train stations with more than 1,700 buses per day, making it one of the country’s busiest bus routes, according to the agencies. The streets with bus-only lanes would incorporate red pavement marking to delineate the lanes, level boarding, queue jumps for buses at key intersections, and other features.

Read the full story at http://chi.streetsblog.org/2013/02/20/proposed-designs-for-central-loop-brt-corridor-unveiled.

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New Tool Visualizes American Bus Rapid Transit

Author: Jessica Soulliere

Duke University’s Center on Globalization, Governance & Competitiveness released a new report, “U.S. Bus Rapid Transit: 10 high-quality features and the value chain of firms that provide them,” a collection of best practices and metrics for bus rapid transit in the United States.

“By identifying 10 features of high-quality bus rapid transit systems, Duke’s visualization tool emphasizes that BRT is more than just dedicated bus lanes; it’s an integrated transport system.”

Three web tools are attached to the CGGC report, including a detailed BRT station mock-up with the 10 essential features of high-value BRT. In addition to the mock-up, the report has created two – web databases, detailing the transit providers currently running American BRT systems, as well as the complete value chain, from bus manufacturers to transportation planners, for American BRT.

These tools are part of a recent trend in BRT data visualization. For example, EMBARQ, the producer of this blog, recently launched BRTdata.org, a database of indicators of BRT systems and high-quality bus corridors around the world. It was launched in April by EMBARQ and the Across Latitudes and Cultures – Bus Rapid Transit Centre of Excellence, in collaboration with the International Energy Agency. ”These tools both aim to provide decision makers with comparative and relevant information about BRT,” said Aileen Carrigan, a senior associate at EMBARQ.

Read the full article at http://sustainablecitiescollective.com/jsoulliere/48796/new-tool-visualizes-american-bus-rapid-transit.

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Guangzhou Connects Bus Rapid Transit with Bike Share

Bus Rapid Transit in Guangzhou, China from Streetfilms on Vimeo.

By Elizabeth Press

Guangzhou is one of the fastest growing cities in the world. The economic hub of China’s southern coast, it has undergone three decades of rapid modernization, and until recently the city’s streets were on a trajectory to get completely overrun by traffic congestion and pollution. But Guangzhou has started to change course. Last year the city made major strides to cut carbon emissions and reclaim space for people, opening new bus rapid transit and public bike-sharing systems.

The Guangzhou BRT system opened in February 2010. It now carries 800,000 passengers a day, seamlessly connecting riders to both the metro system and the city’s new bike-share network. For these innovations, Guangzhou won the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy’s 2011 Sustainable Transport Award. Watch this Streetfilm and see how one of the world’s most dynamic cities is “winning the future” on its streets.

Find out more at http://www.policyinnovations.org/ideas/video/data/000371.

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Road ahead: BRT-taxi industry jam sees SA at governance crossroads

Authors: Jerome van Rooij and Richard Calland

IN ITS resistance to the implementation of the bus rapid transit (BRT) system, the minibus taxi industry is providing a formidable test of President Jacob Zuma ’s fabled reconciliatory skills and of his political mettle more generally.

What is emerging is a fascinating governance case study with profound lessons for the future that go beyond the short-term question of whether the Zuma administration will allow itself to be held to ransom by factions within the minibus taxi industry.

Taking a step back from the current impasse and the inevitably vexed negotiations that are continuing, fundamental questions about governance need to be asked. Why, following a period of intensive consultation and policy and legislative review between 1995 and 2000, resulting in a 20-year vision within which public transport is prioritised, has so little concrete progress been made since then in meeting stated objectives?

In the South African context, where minibus taxis represent the largest component of the urban public transport system (and the only one that operates without government subsidies), the absence of an effective and consistent engagement strategy for the sector has unsurprisingly proven to be a major obstacle.

What’s more, a conspicuous lack of engagement with civil society — for example, public transport user groups, community- based structures, nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) — has meant that a potential source of political support for public transport projects was not tapped. Although rather different in nature to the usual big business lobby, the minibus taxi industry is nonetheless a private interest group whose agenda risks eclipsing the public good; its resistance to change-threatening initiatives designed to meet the needs of future generations.

Read the full article at http://www.businessday.co.za/articles/Content.aspx?id=80252&FORM=ZZNR8

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In The News: Cities in Focus | New York City

About this video

New York’s Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Department of Transportation are on a mission to make the Big Apple the “greatest, greenest big city in the world” by ramping up bicycle infrastructure across the city, introducing bus rapid transit to the Bronx, and pedestrianizing Times Square, among other bold transportation initiatives.

See original post at http://www.embarq.org/en/video/cities-focus-new-york-city

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