The Massachusetts Department of Transportation and the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority plan to construct up to 4.8 miles of bus lanes and other pro-transit infrastructure upgrades across Metro Boston this summer to improve bus speed and reliability as the region re-opens from COVID-19 pandemic-related regulations.
[Above photo by the MBTA]
The two agencies said those “quick-build” projects aim to address transit delay on some of the region’s most congested roadways in order to improve bus travel time and reliability, while moving more people more efficiently – all in an effort to support economic recovery and public health measures.
Those projects are a part of the MBTA’s Better Bus Project and Transit Priority effort, a major initiative to improve bus service and the system as a whole. Several of the projects are also receiving funding through the Massachusetts DOT’s Shared Winter Streets and Spaces grant program, which aims to improve traffic and transit conditions in support of public health, safe mobility, and renewed commerce statewide.
“Throughout the pandemic, the bus system has been a lifeline for riders accessing jobs, healthcare, and services,” said Steve Poftak, MBTA’s general manager, in a statement.
“Since spring 2020, we have worked with our municipal partners to deliver an additional nearly five miles of bus lanes, benefiting over 57,000 riders in some of the region’s hardest-hit communities,” he added – projects that represent “another important step” contributing to the regional effort to advance bus priority on local streets, Poftak noted.