They basically reconstructed the street and are running the same buses as the Eugene system. It's also another case of a project in the FTA process opening over 10 years after conception. I thought BRT was supposed to be cheaper and quicker to implement? Though if it started today, the project wouldn't even be funded under Ma Peters. It got a Medium Low in Cost-Effectiveness and cost $21 million per mile. I thought the reason for BRT projects was because they are more cost-effective. Basically what this proves is that the FTA doesn't want to spend money on projects that give transit its own ROW. No not painting lanes on the street, but a true separation from other traffic that makes it more effective. Today, its required to get a medium in CE as we've discussed before.
Those projects that do not currently have a rating of "medium" in cost-effectiveness would automatically be precluded from funding recommendation by the FTA, notwithstanding the merits of other criteria applicable to those projects.This is part of the cutdown in projects that has been going on lately. It's recently dropped from 85 projects in the pipe before the 2005 "medium" enforcement to 2007. Not counting small starts, this year only has 31 projects in the New Starts report.
Lest you think that projects are rightly being cut, it should be noted that Denver's Southeast Corridor, Charlotte's South Corridor, the Los Angeles Orange Line, and the Minneapolis Hiawatha Line all had a Medium Low ratings. Those projects have all passed their projections yet would not have been funded under the current process. Anyone else tired of cost-effectiveness being used as a blunt object to bludgeon the alternatives that will truly get people into transit, including rail AND true BRT?
Let's see how this line goes. I still wish it would have been rail and electrified, but it's an improvement in the corridor, one that the FTA would not approve of these days.