Report says Van Ness BRT will make transit more efficient, reduce delays

A bus rapid transit system on Van Ness Avenue will speed up service, increase reliability, and attract more passengers to public transportation on the crowded thoroughfare.

Those findings are from an Environmental Impact Report on the Van Ness BRT project, which entails swift-moving, heavy-duty transit vehicles traveling on dedicated lanes. According to the report, which was released on Friday, BRT will reduce transit travel time by 32 percent, increase reliability of bus service by 50 percent, decrease transit delays by 40 percent, and increase transit ridership by 35 percent.

The release of the Environmental Impact Report is a key step toward the progress of the Van Ness BRT project, which is being overseen by the San Francisco County Transportation Authority, a local planning and funding agency.

The public will have 45 days to review the EIR, which states the purpose and goals of the Van Ness BRT project. There will be a formal public hearing on the plan on November 30.

The total cost of the undertaking is projected to cost between $139 and $183 million (which includes street repaving on Van Ness.) So far, the Transportation Authority has identified $159  million in potential funding sources.

“The Van Ness BRT project will create our city’s next great street,” Ross Mirkarimi, chair of the Transportation Authority, said in a release on Friday.

Currently, the Transportation Authority estimates that the BRT line could begin operating by 2016.

wreisman@sfexaminer.com

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