The MTA is ready to rebuild the New York City Transit bus system, the agency announced Monday.
“We’ve listened to our riders’ concerns and are working tirelessly to create a world-class bus system that New Yorkers deserve,” NYCT President Andy Byford said.
The NYC Transit Bus Plan will target traffic congestion and enforcement, add “bold initiatives” like revamping the entire bus route network and bringing new technologies such as double-decker and electric buses, all-door boarding and more real-time data, Byford said.
Straphangers “will start to see changes this year, and we will never stop improving this critical component of New York City’s transportation landscape,” he added.
The route redesign will be the first in decades, NYCT said, and is based on public input, changing demographics and an analysis on travel demand.
NYCT will work with the NYPD and city’s Department of Transportation to expand bus lanes, arrival time displays, traffic signal priority and enforcement of bus lanes.
The agency is also looking at new ways to speed up boarding, and will turn to electronic tap-to-pay readers for all-door boarding among other cashless options, though cash will “always be an option,” NYCT said.
The bus plan will also enhance the bus fleet to use zero-emission, all-electric buses and the city’s first double-decker public buses. Ten electric buses began a pilot program earlier this year, and a double-decker express route bus will be tested on Staten Island this spring. The rest of the fleet, NYCT said, will get upgrades that include digital displays with real-time service data.
“This plan ensures that all our bus operations now and far into the future are customer-centric and nimble enough to adapt to the changing city,” said Darryl C. Irick, MTA Bus Company president and NYCT Department of Buses senior vice president.
With more than 2 million weekday rides, 54,000 trips on 326 routes and more than 5,700 buses, New York City has the largest public bus system in North America.