Friday, May 28, 2010

Southwest Corridor gets green light

The 14-mile corridor between Minneapolis and Eden Prairie is on track to become the region’s third light rail line. The Council approved LRT on the alignment recommended by Hennepin County.

Southwest Corridor information
Video: Southwest LRT moving forward (Peter Bell)

Xcelsior Bus Demonstration

New Flyer Xcelsior Bus to Operate on MVTA Routes

Xcelsior Bus Demonstration
NOTE: Fares will be collected; there will be no bike rack on this bus.

Thursday-Friday, June 3-4:
Morning: 446 SB 7:06am
446 NB 8:03am 446 SB 9:08am
446 NB 10:03am 446 SB 11:08am
446 NB 12:03pm
Afternoon: 436 NB 3:40pm
478 SB 4:59pm

Saturday, June 5
445 WB 7:56am
441 SB 9:04am 441 NB 10:03am
445 EB 11:02am 445 WB 11:56am
441 SB 1:04pm 441 NB 2:03pm

Sunday, June 6
444 NB 7:40am 444 SB 8:45am
444 NB 9:40am 444 SB 10:45am
444 NB 11:40am 444 SB 12:45pm
444 NB 1:40pm 444 SB 2:45pm
444 NB 3:40pm

Monday-Tuesday-Wednesday, June 7-9
Morning: 477 NB 6:36am
Afternoon: 470 SB 3:00pm
472 SB 4:24pm

Thursday-Friday, June 10-11
Morning: 476 NB 6:17am
436 SB 7:45am
Afternoon: 442 SB 1:48pm 442 NB 2:48pm
489 NB 4:10pm
484 SB 5:04pm

Friday, May 21, 2010

Bad Boy of Metro Transit

City Pages did a hack job on Metro Transit
Metro Transit's Bad Boy List
Twin Cities bus drivers seem to have an endless last chance

Monday, May 17, 2010

Kansas City the Next City to use Shoulder Bus Lanes

New Kansas law OKs allow rush-hour buses to drive on shoulder
The Kansas City Star

Under a new law approved by the Kansas Legislature, Johnson County has won approval to run express buses on the shoulder of Interstate 35 during rush hour.

Gov. Mark Parkinson has signed the bill, which allows the county to move ahead with its bus-on-shoulder plan that was developed as an alternative to operating rail service in the I-35 corridor between Olathe and Kansas City.

The law will allow buses to only run on the shoulder when traffic on I-35 dips to less than 35 mph. The buses would not be allowed to exceed the speed of interstate traffic by more than 10 mph. The plans would still have to be approved by the state transportation secretary.

Patterned after a bus-on-shoulder system in Minneapolis, the plan is intended to improve the reliability and speed of bus service on I-35 between the suburbs and downtown. Eight other metro areas, including Washington, D.C., and its Virginia suburbs, also allow buses on shoulders.

Studies have shown that running buses on highway shoulders is relatively safe.

A study done by the Minnesota Department of Transportation found there were 20 accidents on the shoulder involving a bus between 1991 and 2001. Most crashes were described as "minor scrapes."

Since 2001, one injury crash involved a bus and that was a fatality. In that case, the bus driver was found not to be at fault, a study reported.

Experts reported similar results for a bus-on-shoulder operation in Miami. Authorities there said there were no “known incidents” related to the bus-on-shoulder service after it started three years ago, according to an engineering review done in 2009.

The county’s plan calls for adding five new routes that would add 36 more trips at rush hour between southern Olathe and Overland Park and downtown. The buses generally would run every half hour, according to a June 2009 report detailing the plan.

Startup costs from Johnson County’s plan are estimated at about $20 million, most of which is needed for new buses, transit stations and preparing the shoulders for the vehicles.

The county hopes to get the federal government to fund 80 percent of the capital costs and rely on local and state sources for the balance.

The county recently created a panel to study ways to fund increases bus service. Its report is due by late this year or early next year.

The new law required the county to make an annual report to the Legislature about the implementation and operation of the new service.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Maple Grove Transit

Maple Grove Transit is expected to receive 3 MCI coach buses in July. They will be used on MG Route 784.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Metro Transit Bus # 3121

Repainted Metro Transit Bus # 3121 2003New Flyer D60HF parked outside of MJ Ruter Garage.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

New Buses

The 2010 Gillig BRT and Hybrid are starting to be delivered to Metro Transit.

Bus Show 2010

On Mass Transit Magazine's Facebook page has pictures of Bus Show 2010. Included is a picture of Metro Transit Bus #1200 2010 Gillig BRT. There are also pictures of other buses.