Thursday, July 3, 2014

Bus Rapid Transit System: A Game Changer for Commuters

Wazzup Pilipinas!

Among the many transportation modernization projects of the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) is the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system, which aims to deliver a fast, convenient, and cost-effective commuting option to residents of Cebu and Manila.

“BRT systems around the world have been successful in mobilizing masses of people in dense urban settings, getting them to their destinations reliably through fixed schedules, efficiently through segregated lanes and priority passage, comfortably and safely through modern, well-equipped buses, and affordably through relatively lower capital costs and maintenance expenditures,” said DOTC Secretary Jun Abaya.

“BRTs are game-changers. They are as effective as rail systems in terms of moving people around quickly and efficiently, but are much cheaper to build and are faster to develop. Since they will be granted as concessions, their riders will not be at the mercy of ‘colorum’ vehicles or transport strikes. They will be spared from unnecessary disruptions and unsafe traveling conditions,” Abaya noted.

The BRT concept began in Curitiba, Brazil in 1974, but the “BRT” name and the system’s popularity did not come until it was introduced in Bogota, Colombia in 2000. Currently, there are over two hundred (200) BRT systems either operating or being built worldwide.

5 Key Components

There are at least five (5) generally-accepted components for a BRT system:

Modern buses with technical specifications designed precisely for the system, such as bus floors with the same height as station platforms as these would save time for boarding and alighting;
A segregated lane or “busway,” which only BRT buses my ply;
BRT stations at locations identified to be most suited for riders;
Continuously-operating services programmed to meet passenger demands; and
Intelligent transport systems or information technologies which ensure the efficient operations of the system, such as automatic signaling which control traffic lights to ensure that the BRT buses are not impeded during trips.

The Country’s First BRTs

After obtaining the National Economic Development Authority’s approval last May to construct the country’s first BRT system in Cebu, the DOTC is now proposing a Manila BRT to serve the Quezon Circle-Manila City Hall route. Both these projects are made possible with a grant and technical expertise provided by the World Bank.

The DOTC is now studying other possible BRT locations in Metro Manila, in a bid to provide commuters with a modern, safe, convenient, and efficient mass transit bus system which current transport schemes are unable to offer.

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  1. It's good to know that the government is doing this project because this might be one of the efficient solutions to one of the most dreadful problems encountered by us Filipinos, which is heavy traffic. I hope this might be implemented soon so that people will have a more enjoyable travelling experience :)

  2. Very good written article. It will be supportive to anyone who utilizes it, including me. Keep doing what you are doing – can’r wait to read more posts. toys for 3 year old


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