Thursday, November 3, 2011

Transit Improvements in Laurel

While this blog is oriented toward pedestrian and bike infrastructure (and its role in planning and the creation of a sophisticated modern city), there is another transportation mode that are no less important to cities: transit.  Two important transit improvements are coming (in a couple of years) that will help those that rely on the Metro bus or MARC trains.  The first piece of news is that MTA is adding capacity to the MARC lines via more cars.  The second piece of (old) news is that WMATA was awarded a TIGER grant last year to improve bus travel time on several routes, including Route 1 from Laurel down into DC (2MB PDF).  Bus travel time improvements include Transit Signal Priority (TSP) and Queue Jumps.  TSP allows buses to get through an intersection faster than they normally would by adding green time or truncating green time from cross streets.  Queue Jumps provide space for buses to get ahead of a queue of cars (so that there actually is a potential time advantage to using a bus over driving yourself).

Both MARC and WMATA improvements are scheduled for a couple of years out, but are very welcome nonetheless.

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