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ITDP Maps Bus Rapid Transit Successes Worldwide

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Searching for solid examples of Bus Rapid Transit in your slice of the world, or pondering possible ways to solve a particular BRT problem? A new interactive map developed by the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy might have your answer.

ITDP, which created the BRT Standard to define high-quality BRT and foster it around the world, has now plotted every city on the planet with a BRT route that meets its criteria. The map shows that the most, and highest-quality, BRT systems are concentrated in Latin America, where the concept originated, and in fast-growing China. Within the United States, Cleveland, Los Angeles, and Pittsburgh stand out as leaders, but cities around the country are hatching plans for new systems.

North America isn't the only region where BRT has a lot of room to expand. Fast-growing cities across Africa, the Middle East, and South Asia could also look to BRT to provide more mobility for their citizens at a relatively low cost.

The map also illustrates key examples of how individual cities have addressed the most common challenges of implementing BRT. For instance, it notes the "beautifully designed stations" along Johannesburg's Rea Vaya line as a case study for level platforms, which eliminate stairs and thus speed bus boarding. As cities like San Francisco face similar challenges in designing and implementing their BRT systems, they can learn from other cities' experiences.

(Editor's note: See also Friday's SBLA article about Metro's BRT project getting underway for Vermont Avenue.)

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