Each weekday, residents in the Washington metropolitan area take more than 600,000 trips on buses, which is about the same number of trips made on the Metrorail system. Yet trips are slow and, too often, unreliable. Buses expand access to jobs and opportunities far beyond the reach of existing Metro stations, connecting communities that are not served by Metrorail.
Today, the MetroNow Coalition is launching a campaign to call on local elected leaders and transportation officials to take action to prioritize bus investments and improve regional coordination.
The Federal City Council is a member of the MetroNow Coalition, which is made up of regional leaders from the business, non-profit, and advocacy communities. It came together to ensure that action was taken to put Metro—the backbone of greater Washington’s transportation infrastructure—on a safe, smart, and sustainable path forward. It is continuing its commitment to regional mobility by expanding its mission to include the region’s bus system.
The Bus Campaign calls for leaders to:
- Prioritize Buses on Roads through dedicated bus lanes, queue jumps, and transit signal priority at intersections to increase bus speeds and improve reliability.
- Implement Equitable Fare Policies through free bus-rail transfers, fare capping, and reduced fares for low-income households to remove barriers for low-income riders, especially those who need to commute long distances.
- Improve Regional Coordination through the creation of a regional coordinating steward, implementation of an integrated payment system, and the adoption of a regional bus network redesign to create a more efficient and easier to use bus system for riders.
- Measure and Report on Success through the adoption and publication of uniform data standards for all bus providers in the region to allow the successes and challenges of the bus to be better understood by providers, elected officials, and advocates.
The Washington Post published an article this morning describing the campaign in more detail. You can find that article here.
In Fall 2019, the Bus Transformation Project (BTP) released a strategy document calling for frequent and convenient bus service, bus priority on roads, an excellent customer experience, and a publicly appointed task force to help transform the bus.
We all have a role to play to ensure the strategies of the Bus Transformation Project are actually implemented. We know our region deserves a better bus system—the time to act is now. Visit www.MetroNow.com for more information.