The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) announced Tuesday that it would award $75 million in federal grant funds toward the Van Ness Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Project.
The two-mile project will include the creation of bus-only lanes on Van Ness Avenue, an important north-south corridor in the center of San Francisco that accommodates both the 49 and 47 bus lines. Van Ness Avenue also hosts North Bay buses run by Golden Gate Transit.
In addition to separated lanes specifically for buses, Van Ness Avenue will also receive nine bus boarding platforms, new bus shelters, new Muni buses and resurfaced roadways.
“There is a clear need for better alternatives to traffic-congested roads in San Francisco,” FTA Acting Administrator Carolyn Flowers said in a statement. “For many of the residents in this corridor who rely on public transportation, the Van Ness BRT will reduce transit travel times, improve transit service reliability, and provide a more enjoyable ride.”
The funds being given to the SFMTA for this project include approximately $45 million through the FTA’s Capital Investment Grant (CIG) program, and $30 million in FTA Bus and Bus Facilities funds. The total cost of the project is $223 million; the remaining cost is being covered by other federal, state, and local sources.
The Van Ness BRT Project is expected to be completed by 2020, and is estimated to accommodate 52,400 weekday trips in its first year.