Bus Rapid Transit is a potential missing piece among the public transportation options being considered for Greater Boston’s future. Gold Standard BRT has many characteristics that make it worth including:
- Agility. BRT is a highly agile system that connects neighborhoods better than a traditional hub-and-spoke rail system. BRT doesn’t require tracks and connects seamlessly to bike and pedestrian transit, and its dedicated lanes (separated from traffic) are easily plowed during snow.
- Cost-effectiveness. Because BRT does not include complex track infrastructure, it requires less upfront capital to construct. BRT can on average be up to seven times more affordable than light rail, per mile.
- Immediacy. BRT can be implemented more quickly than rail systems, relieving pressure on the MBTA’s aging train and trolley infrastructure.
See the first citywide technical analysis of BRT: Better Rapid Transit for Greater Boston: The Potential for Gold Standard Bus Rapid Transit across the Metropolitan Area.
The Study Group, convened by the Barr Foundation, partnered with the non-profit Institute for Transportation & Development Policy (ITDP), a world leader in the study of BRT systems, to analyze a number of potential corridors in which BRT could reduce congestion on the T, serve underserved communities or groups, provide more direct connections between neighborhoods, and bolster planned future development.