A report is making the rounds today that claims the Corridor Cities Transitway BRT line could be built for far less money if buses were routed in mixed traffic rather than on a transitway, if “temporary stops” were built instead of stations, and if park and rides were eliminated from the outer stations.

The report is wrong in one very fundamental way: It is impossible to build a bus rapid transit Corridor Cities Transitway for the amount of money it claims.

What is possible is to build something so entirely different from the Corridor Cities Transitway that you couldn’t call it the same thing.

It is totally possible to build a non-rapid, non-transitway bus route for a lot less money. And, in doing so, provide a vastly inferior product that would be vastly less convenient, and which would serve vastly fewer passengers.

The report’s authors claim that their redesign wouldn’t slow buses all that much, but they completely miss the point that ride quality also matters. Eliminating stations in favor of normal bus stops and taking away park-and-rides might not technically slow buses down, but it would certainly affect ridership.


[Continue reading Dan Malouff’s post at BeyondDC.]

Dan Malouff is an Arlington County transportation planner who blogs independently at BeyondDC.com. The Local Blog Network is a group of bloggers from around the D.C. region who have agreed to make regular contributions to All Opinions Are Local.