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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Midttrafik Commercial – “The Bus”

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As shelters move farther out, network of buses connects homeless with downtown

Author: Steve Hendrix

Mark Fischer might not have a fixed address, but he sure has a fixed commute. On Monday morning, Fischer, 47 and unemployed for almost a decade, started his day as he always does: rolling out of bed at 6:15 a.m., pulling on his two jackets and topcoat and hurrying out to the sidewalk to catch the bus – the homeless bus.

Fischer and a group of about 30 men, most lugging backpacks and bulging plastic bags, stamped their feet to hold off the pre-dawn chill in front of a D.C. shelter in an old warehouse on New York Avenue NE. Promptly at 6:35, an empty white bus, airport limo variety, pulled up. The doors opened and the men shuffled aboard for the trip downtown, to their daily rounds.

The homeless commute might be a little less refined than the one most Washington workers experience, but it is every bit as regular. Each morning, the District government operates a kind of free mini-Metro for the homeless, connecting the city’s increasingly outlying network of shelters with soup kitchens, social service bureaus and preferred panhandling blocks closer to downtown.

Then, each evening, the homeless commuters join the outbound flow. With the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library on G Street NW serving as depot, 10 scheduled buses load up to take the homeless back to shelters on the outskirts of town. The city spends about $1.8 million a year on transportation for the homeless, including the daily buses and a hypothermia van that patrols the streets on wintry nights.

Read the full article at http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/11/05/AR2010110503169.html

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Project: What’s the Best Bus Route in America?

Bicycles can be chic, subways artful, but buses? Buses are not exactly the golden child of transportation. They’re more like the red-headed step child: Deep down you know they mean well but they’re just a little harder to love.

Yet public buses are an essential form of transit in cities across the country, and they account for a big chunk of the nearly 10.2 billion trips Americans took on public transportation in 2009. We think it’s time to give a little love to one of the least celebrated modes of transit. To that end, we’ve teamed up with Transportation Alternatives and an impressive group of bus-loving jurors to see and hear why your bus route is the best in America.

What is it about your bus route that you love? Is your bus driver brilliant? Is the view from your window breathtaking? Do your fellow riders characters belong in a Hemingway novel?

For more information: http://www.good.is/post/project-what-s-the-best-bus-route-in-america/

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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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In The News: DOT wants seat belts installed in new motorcoaches

Author: Joan Lowy

New motorcoaches would for the first time be required to have lap-shoulder seat belts under a proposal announced Monday by Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.

The plan affects large, tour-style buses, not city buses or school buses, which are state-regulated.

The motorcoach industry, which transports 750 million passengers a year, has 90 days to respond to the proposal. It would take effect three years after it’s made final.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicated in the proposal that it is also considering requiring existing buses be retrofitted with belts, which is more expensive than incorporating belts into new buses. The proposal solicits comments on how that might best be done and whether lap-shoulder or lap-only belts should be required.

Read the full article at: http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5jY137A4mZA8FhmlAK9dMhYMQiWVQD9HKP3G80

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