Possible rapid bus routes routes revealed

March 4, 2012 by  

Twin Cities Metro Transit has been analyzing potential rapid transit routes for buses,. From the 11 identified has narrowed it down to a couple of possibilities, both in St. Paul city limits.

The routes identified by Metro Transit are Snelling Avenue and West Seventh Street which were rated very high in regards to “readiness factors”. Those factors include affordability and demand from passengers. Two routes in Minneapolis, Chicago and West Broadway, also scored very well.

The bus rapid transit, or BRT, is different from a regular route in that a bus would make just two or three stops in a mile instead of the regular eight stops. The bus routes would also serve passengers at larger transit stations with heated shelters and pay stations. The route would be traveled by larger, low-floor types of buses which would have more control over stoplights.

Officials from Twin Cities Metro Transit forecast that with a BRT on the two identified routes, passengers will travel 29 per cent quicker than bus service with more frequent stops. The downfall for passengers already traveling those routes is the loss of stops along the way.

The purchase of new, larger capacity buses and larger, heated shelters and pay stations for each new bus rapid transit corridor would top $31 million.

St. Paul will be hosting open houses in the weeks to come to showcase the potential routes and to get customer feedback. Flyer printing to advertise open houses in the neighbourhoods affected by the new routes could be an excellent way to encourage passenger participation.