Starting in 2016 Chicago plans for an express bus version of rail rapid transit that aims to cut travel times by 80 percent.
The $160 million project announced Friday would mark the CTA's first full-scale test of the service. Transit officials plan to pay for design, construction and special buses with federal and local money and are looking at creative financing sources they have yet to line up.
When completed, the service would operate on 24-hour, buses-only center lanes, one in each direction, initially on an approximately 6-mile section of Ashland between Cortland (1800 North) and 31st streets, officials said.
The service is designed to quickly connect riders to CTA rail lines, Metra and bus lines, as well as the Illinois Medical District, the University of Illinois at Chicago, Malcolm X College and the United Center.
Passengers would pay fares at the center-island stations and board through doors on the left side of the double-long buses. The bus floors would be level with the station platform for quicker boarding and exiting. And transponders on the buses would communicate with traffic signals to extend green lights for the buses, which would make limited stops.
es per trip based on the current average trip length of 2.5 miles on the No. 9 bus.
Constructing the bus-only lanes, stations and a landscaped median over the initial 6 miles plus purchasing specialized buses are estimated to cost $116 million, said Kevin O'Malley, CTA general manager of strategic planning and policy.
I think this is pretty cool!