What Is BRT?
BRT stands for Bus Rapid Transit. But what exactly is that? How is BRT different from standard bus service? There are many different BRT systems, serving different kinds of communities in different ways. In fact, no two BRT systems are alike. But, in general, when people talk about BRT, they talking about creating a bus system that’s faster, more reliable, more flexible, more convenient… a system that’s more attractive to more people.
What makes BRT so attractive? Different systems use different techniques. Here are some of the most popular features:
- More frequent service and limited stops. BRT provides direct service to major destinations within Bergen County and offers connections outside of the County. BRT vehicles may make stops along a route at fewer locations to provide more express travel time for the majority of the route’s passengers.
- Exclusive bus lanes, queue jumps at intersections, and other approaches that enable buses to consistently travel at posted speed limits. BRT would introduce roadway treatments to maintain a reliable schedule.
- Improved fare payment technology, including ways to pay before you board. BRT offers rider-friendly options for off-board ticket purchase to reduce the time it takes passengers to board.
- Traffic signal priority that adjusts traffic lights to keep buses moving. BRT is connected to the traffic signal system in order to keep you moving.
- Advanced buses that may be larger, easier to get on and off, and use cleaner fuels. BRT often uses new buses that make the system more comfortable, more sustainable, and more identifiable.
- Enhanced and more customer-friendly bus stations. BRT is a flexible transportation system with more comfortable passenger shelters and bus stations that provide additional amenities.
- Real-time travel information for waiting riders. BRT passengers can expect to have information about arrival and departure times available at the station or accessible to riders through the Web or on cell phones.
We don’t know which of these features will be included in our plan for Bergen County yet. That’s part of what we’re studying and looking for feedback about now.
But here’s what we do know: We want Bergen County BRT to be an attractive new bus service that builds on the transit systems and roads we already have. It will be cost-effective. It will serve activity centers and areas with high employment, making it easier for thousands of people to get to work and to other destinations. It will promote the economic development we all need. And it will make Bergen County an even better place to live.