Bruce Murphy
Murphy’s Law

Does Anyone Oppose Bus Rapid Transit?

The idea is very unsexy, yet has gained amazingly wide support.

By - Jun 7th, 2016 12:53 pm
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BRT Renderings. Rendering from of MCTS.

BRT Renderings. Rendering from of MCTS.

The most obvious place in town for some form of mass transit has always been the heavily trafficked, east-west corridor from downtown Milwaukee to Wauwatosa, parallel to I-94. Mayor John Norquist had envisioned light rail in that corridor but Waukesha County politicians adamantly and successfully opposed it. Now we have a proposal to create an nine-mile BRT or Bus Rapid Transit line, championed by Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele, and the response is radically different, suggesting this proposal could succeed.

Of course, a faster version of a bus isn’t as sexy as rail, but that also eliminates the usual protests of “choo-choo train” haters, as does the fact that the BRT wouldn’t go all the way to the county line, instead terminating in Wauwatosa near the Medical College of Wisconsin. Yet BRT can accomplish many of the goals of light rail, reducing travel times, attracting some automobile drivers and thereby reducing greenhouse gases and road fatalities, and encouraging development and increasing property values along the corridor. In all cases its impact is less than that of light rail, and it’s less permanent, but BRT is also much less expensive.

For politically polarized metro Milwaukee, perhaps the greatest virtue of BRT is that it sends up no red flags. Abele first announced plans to pursue creation of a BRT a year ago, and there have as yet been no politicians condemning it. Indeed, the policy has — gasp! — even united Abele and the county board. “The board strongly supported moving toward implementation of the BRT proposal last month when they approved significant additional funding commitments,” board chair Theo Lipscomb tells Urban Milwaukee. “Initial funding to deploy BRT features such as signal priority along the east west corridor was provided last year.”

Both Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett and Wauwatosa Mayor Kathleen Ehley have signaled their interest in BRT service within this corridor. Milwaukee Common Council President Ashanti Hamilton calls BRT “an important component of a regional transit system.” The suburban-dominated Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission has been an advocate for bus rapid transit since the 1960s. The Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce is on record supporting the BRT proposal as “a flexible and cost efficient way to connect economic clusters,” as its president Tim Sheehy puts it.

The BRT has obvious benefits for the medical college, better connecting it to the city. Marquette University President Michael Lovell appears to be on board: Lovell’s spokesperson Brian Dorrington says this proposal “could potentially benefit members of our Marquette community who take the bus, including many students who currently utilize the UPASS.” I’m also told MU is looking into creating a new program, yet to be named, located near the medical college, which make a better transportation link very important. I’m even told that Waukesha Board Chair Paul Decker supports the plan, but he did not reply to requests for comment.

The metro area’s polarization has made it difficult to create any transportation links between workers living in the city and jobs located in outlying counties. But “a well-designed BRT system” as Abele has noted, “will efficiently and affordably connect more people to more jobs while helping create a climate that attracts new businesses and new workers to Milwaukee.” No, It won’t connect city workers to Waukesha County, but might provide an easy way for employers in that county to shuttle workers to their companies. And it will connect the 81,000 workers and 25,000 residents of downtown Milwaukee with the nearly 25,000 employees at the Milwaukee Regional Medical Center and Milwaukee County Research Park.

For such an un-glamorous idea, bus rapid transit has seen tremendous growth world-wide. As of October 2014, 186 cities in six continents had implemented BRT systems, with a total of 2,956 miles of BRT lanes. An estimated 31.7 million passengers use BRT worldwide everyday. Nearly 20 million of them are located in Latin America, the hands-down leader in BRT, with 60 systems, led by Brazil with 33 cities.

Globally, BRT has nearly quadrupled between 2004 and 2014, a recent study by the UW-Milwaukee School of Architecture and Urban Planning found. That growth is also happening in the U.S. where “more than 30 U.S. regions in at least 24 states are either building or actively considering building new bus rapid transit lines.”

The obvious model for Milwaukee is the 7.1 mile BRT “Healthline” in Cleveland which connects that city to its medical complex. It opened in 2008 and has generated $6.3 billion in new development along the line, including 7,200 housing units.

Research on BRT lines has shown that on average, they have reduced travel time by 25 percent. As for development, areas within a half-mile of BRT corridors increased their share of new office space by one third from 2000-2007, while new multifamily apartment construction doubled and there was a rent premium for office space within a BRT corridor, one study found. In Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and other cities with high-quality BRT lines, real estate near the routes tends to be valued at a premium, research has found. And BRTs in Latin American have contributed to a 40 percent reduction in fatalities and injuries on the streets where they were implemented, while Pittsburgh’s BRT saw a 30 percent reduction.

A recent analysis by the Milwaukee County Transit System details the enormous potential of a BRT line in this east-west corridor. The MCTS envisions 19 bus stops or stations, with buses running every 10 minutes from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., and every 30 minutes during the night and early morning. Its construction is expected to cost $42 to $48 million, and its annual operating cost would be $4.4 million. It would attract between 7,250 and 9,250 riders, increasing ridership within the corridor by 40 percent, and take some 6,700 cars off the road per day.

The analysis found there are 120,000 people working in station areas, who could consider using the BRT. But the benefits for residents along the line are particularly powerful:

-47,000 people live in station areas;

-25 percent of them are below the poverty line;

-40 percent are people of color;

-and 23 percent do not have a car.

These statistics should make it easier for the county to gain federal funding for the BRT. So should the apparent unanimity of area politicians and civic leaders. This seemingly dull idea could have dramatic benefits for Milwaukee.

Update 1:30 p.m. June 7: Waukesha County Board Chair Paul Decker has emailed me to say he now opposes the project: “When originally presented I liked the idea that it was utilizing buses vs rail to ‘test’ for a solution to get more workers to where the jobs are today. Now the time, cost and neighborhood disruption seem higher than first initiated, and so I’m disappointed.” Decker did not offer any details as to how the proposal had changed.

BRT Renderings

More about the East-West BRT Line

35 thoughts on “Murphy’s Law: Does Anyone Oppose Bus Rapid Transit?”

  1. beer baron says:

    Who care what Paul Decker or Waukesha County thinks? Please fully isolate them in whatever transit plan we get. Let them wallow in cars and an unsustainable planning scheme they currently use.

  2. Sam says:

    “Now the time, cost and neighborhood disruption seem higher than first initiated, and so I’m disappointed.” Paul didn’t realize that it takes a lot of time, money, and disruption to build infrastructure in dense urban environments? We’re not building in empty farm fields like you do out in Hartland buddy.

  3. Joe says:

    I was hoping the article would provide more details on the proposal. Or perhaps I missed a link to the details because there are way too many links in the article. For those interested, more info can be found at eastwestbrt.com. It looks like a good idea; I hope it moves forward.

    If only the mayor was honest enough to admit that BRT could accomplish the same goals of his trolley at a fraction of the cost.

  4. Answer to your question — “Does anyone oppose bus rapid transit ?”

    The answer is yes……. especially if it requires dedicated lanes — one less lane for cars
    (moving or parked). Without dedicated lanes it loses the idea of “rapid”.

    The Obama administration has been quietly pushing rapid bus transport because of the
    incredible savings compared to light rail.

  5. Dean Pearson says:

    No rails make a lot more sense than the downtown trolly-folly. But, sacrificing lanes on both sides of one street — that’s what is pictured — would be a mistake. Run it on two different routes or create passing lanes like trains have. However, you can’t truly have RAPID anything on the ground. Want a Disney-like MonoRail through your neighborhood? NO. Subway? NO Light rail, NOT REALLY. People living around the line seem to be forgotten in these schemes!
    We’d be better served by a bus system that ran on schedule and on rubber on the existing roads. Why do you need more?

  6. Vincent Hanna says:

    Is there a model that we should be looking to? Is there a city of comparable size that has an outstanding bus system and no other mass transit?

  7. Casey says:

    Stuttgart Germany is very similar to Milwaukee and have a great transportation system but it relies mostly on tracked transportation.

  8. Vincent Hanna says:

    I ask because when people say all we need is a great bus system, one they make it seem like it is incredibly simple and two they make it seem like there are countless other examples of outstanding bus-only mass transit in other cities just like Milwaukee. I’d love for them to point out the examples and demonstrate how simple it would be for Milwaukee to replicate them.

  9. Art Hackett says:

    Yes, there is opposition. In Tennessee. the state Senate passed a measure to outlaw BRT systems anywhere in the state after the Koch Bros. issued a fatwa against a proposal in Knoxville. The concern is most likely due to the fact that the system would incentivize concentrating development along the route which is thought to be harder to shift than a regular bus route. Under libertarian principles, development can only be under the control of sovereigns acting to turn the steering wheel of a privately owned vehicle. According to the following article some sort of compromised was reached and the Senate bill was blocked.

    http://www.wired.com/2014/04/tennessee-bans-bus-rapid-transit/

  10. Rich says:

    What I don’t understand is why the BRT is being planned (at least from the maps available on http://www.eastwestbrt.com) to terminate at the DTC? Shouldn’t it go to the Intermodal Center, or are competing bodies of government building disconnected and overlapping services (City Streetcar and County BRT). I suppose the two systems have an almost common meeting point at Wisconsin/Broadway.

    Nevertheless, this might open up some options for people living downtown and working at the Medical Center, assuming, of course, that wages there pay sufficiently to afford a downtown apartment. It really won’t satisfy the needs of any other traveler going to of coming from any point past the ends of the system.

    BTW, how “rapid” will the easternmost two miles of this BRT be as it argues its way down Wisconsin Ave with traffic and all of the other non-BRT buses stopping every two blocks?

    Also, I think they’re doing BRT wrong, or at the very least the comparison to light rail is inaccurate. Fixed transit does better moving more people over longer distances, the short game is better served by other modes (such as streetcars, or even your own feet). Many USA rail transit systems have stations every mile or so (http://mic-ro.com/metro/table.html). This BRT is planned with stops every 1900 ft (1/3 mile), which is only slightly farther apart than the existing bus stops on the exact same route.

  11. Eric S says:

    I’m sure there will be more opposition as details become clearer and this moves from the concept stage to a concrete proposal. Much of the opposition will be rather confused or illogical and some will be general anti-transit arguments that emerge whenever any transit improvement and transit priority measures are proposed.

    As for the proposal itself, curbside lanes are a major mistake – they will most certainly be blocked by illegally standing/parking vehicles as well as right-turning vehicles. If dedicated lanes are planned, they really need to be center/median lanes, not curbside.

    Also, dedicated lanes are most important where streets are congested – downtown. If dedicated lanes are provided where it’s easy (along Wisconsin Ave. on the Near West Side) but not where it’s tougher (downtown), there will be little benefit. Given the amount of east-west bus traffic through downtown, it’s rather pathetic that the city has not provided dedicated lanes through downtown as of yet (BRT project or no BRT project).

    Outside of downtown where there is significant pushback against giving buses dedicated lanes, I’d be curious to see if many of the time savings could be achieved without such lanes – by bus queue jump lanes at congested intersections, by building bus bulb-outs for all stops, by using proof-of-payment/all-doors-boarding (rather than pay-as-enter-front-door-only), by installing and activating transit signal priority on all traffic signals, etc.

  12. wisconsin conservative digest says:

    WE have backed the buses and roads for 50 years. Backed the takeover of private buses by the county. Opposed “Lite Rail” and the trolley. Concentrate on doing one thing good, not just paying off the unions and the contractors.

  13. Jason says:

    Maybe we should market it to the 65+ crowd and then only the suckers(taxpayers) will pay for it.

  14. PGerard says:

    Let’s first realize that the “picture” is just one possible rendering of the project. Then, let’s look at the potential benefits: a reduction in accidents, faster transportation time, and local development. Also, don’t get hung up on the term “rapid.” Realize that right now the amount of traffic on the roads puts the cars at a standstill, and the answer for sure is to not keep adding lanes. With increased gridlock, anything faster than that could be called “rapid.” Finally, I agree, who cares what Waukesha County thinks about this plan? Their simple answer should be “it’s none of our business.”

  15. wisconsin conservative digest says:

    In the long run we need to work with surrounding counties to cooriante a Rapid e?xpress bus, instead of trying to build billion dollar Light rail programs. wEc an et around the area pretty easy do not need to duplicate and subsidize other programs stick with buses.

  16. Casey says:

    Oh no…I agree with Bob D. Yes, surrounding counties need to work with Milwaukee to lift the whole region.

    However…the Waukesha director opposes even buses.

  17. Edith says:

    Here’s what I don’t get … perhaps someone else does. I love the idea of trains and BRTs, any kind of public transportation. Also as a kid, I got around Milwaukee on street cars and trolleys. So why not routes that can really serve people who need pubic transportation? Why not on Fond du Lac, Teutonia and Appleton Avenues, for example, where lots of people take buses now?

  18. Bill Sell says:

    Waukesha County Executive Paul Decker is not a part of this discussion. This is a County-Cities effort to improve our infrastructure. Why his opinion was brought into Bruce’s article is the question on my mind. His remark from 20 miles away serves only to inflame not shed light. “neighborhood disruption” – Indeed. Whose neighborhood? If he means Wauwatosa or Milwaukee isn’t there a word for an outsider pandering? “Carpetbagger,” perhaps?

    Waukesha has been about cutting itself out of all regional planning. Until further notice we need to take those officials at their word. And continue our planning.

  19. Dan says:

    It’s too bad the Rapid Transit interurban (light rail) lines weren’t saved 65 years ago. The link of a We Energies photo showed the Rapid Transit 84th St. stop, two blocks north of today’s I-94.

    https://twitter.com/MilwaukeePubLib/status/738501288586055681

  20. Casey says:

    I feel very strongly the way Edith does. To me the most practical route that would serve those with the most need would be a line from the 3rd ward, through downtown, up FDL to Midtown.
    I really hope that line would be the 2nd expansion after the Wisconsin corridor now.
    Third expansion should go down either Forest Home or Muskego out to Southridge.

  21. AG says:

    I think the Downtown to Tosa campus makes sense because it does link two good strong job centers. But I too agree that it Casey’s idea for 3rd ward up to Midtown (actually I think all the way to far northwest side industrial parks) is an obvious next line. The north/south regular lines intersecting the BRT’s mean that a lot of people can get from home to a job center with a max of one transfer. I like that a lot.

    As for Waukesha and Waukesha County… if they don’t want to be connected it’s only going to hurt them in the long run. They already struggle filling entry level and manual labor jobs because they don’t have enough workers… if they continue to isolate themselves companies will be forced to look at moving back to Milwaukee county.

  22. PeterG says:

    To the excellent second paragraph in ag’s comment, I would add an interview from last year with former Milwaukee mayor, John O. Norquist, in which the former mayor elaborates on AG’s point and addresses cost effectiveness:

    http://www.milwaukeemag.com/2015/02/19/off-ramp/

    Even if one excludes some of the social and economic costs (pollution, aggregate fuel costs, work time lost to traffic congestion, fatalities and casualties policing costs–yes, those extra state and county police cruisers needed for freeway traffic policing do cost a good deal of money, day in and day out) relying on and expanding freeways as the primary mode of commuting) is hardly a bargain when compared with creating a BRT route and streetcar/light rail to make an effective transit system.. The cumulative costs of rebuilding the Marquette Zoo, Stadium (planned), and Airport interchanges, along with the widening of I-94 to eight lanes will run up into the low eleven digits. As for operating costs, public transit partially defrays these with fare revenue; freeway patrolling, fuel costs, lost time, and fatalities/casualties are paid for by individual motorists (fuel, depreciation, and fuel tax) and by the taxpayer (those police cruisers, ambulances, and the like). The total cost of the latter, when admitted and accounted for is appreciably greater than the operating budgets of transit systems with BRT and rail.

    As for BRT, it is only rapid transit if it a full “bells and whistles” system. Other commenters have mentioned a fully segregated and respected BRT only lane (preferably in the middle of the street) in congested areas. To that I would add traffic signal override/coordination and kiosk-shelters that allow or even mandate prepayment before boarding.

    Beforel I moved back to Milwaukee last year, I lived for 36 years in Boston, where there are currently two BRT routes, known collectively as the Silver Line I have seen cases in which BRT does not live up to its potential. The least successful line runs exclusively on city streets has a bus lane whose demarcation is barely visible (a faded single painted line that was close to disappearance last year) and which is filled with parked cars, no traffic signal coordination (a series of red lights as Washington Street crosses the Mass. Turnpike Extension can and usually does leave a bus waiting some three minutes until it can proceed), and no prepayment of fares before boarding (it can often be 5 or 6 minutes at an individual stop at which many are boarding and pay cash), Since this branch of the Silver Line was supposed to replace, after an 18-year wait, an elevated section of the Orange Line subway which had been moved to a neighborhood with higher incomes, in terms of speed and of frequency of service. That section of Boston’s BRT is widely known as “the Silver Lie”. It offers no appreciable improvement over a regular bus line, except for larger shelters

    he other section of the Silver Line runs from South Station, and intermodal terminal (Amtrak, commuter rail,intercity bus, and subway) is closer to a true BRT than the other line, at least on paper. The first section runs underground, with fare payment taking place before boarding at a limited number of stations. The tunnel ends in the so-called Seaport District and runs on city streets and through the Ted Williams tunnel to Logan Airport. Like so many things in Boston, the reality falls short of the promises on paper. The tunnel was built as a part of the notorious, scandal-prone Big Dig, whose contractors left a tunnel so poorly made and bumpy that the dual-fuel buses can only travel at a speed of 5 m.p.h. After leaving the tunnel, the BRT route runs on city streets, where there are non-coordinated traffic signals every block which greatly favor cross-traffic There is also a 1–minute wait while the bus changes from trolley-pole electric power to diesel. Once inside the auto tunnel, things run smoothly. For all of its many faults, this branch of the Silver Line is still a preferable alternative to the Blue Line subway/connecting bus route to the airport. It offers examples of what to do and not do when initiating a BRT line.

    A third Silver Line route from the densely-populated, low income suburb of Chelsea to the airport, many of whose employees live in or near Chelsea, looks like a better form of BRT, It will serve a previously transit-deprived, low income immigrant population, avoiding delays with a separate, but easily accessible to passengers, right of way in congested areas, having traffic signal coordination (if completed as promised), and prepayment of fares at some stations.

    BRT works if it has has as few traffic impediments as possible, boards passengers as quickly as possible, has adequate spacing between stations, and has sufficient rolling stock to ensure good frequency and avoid overcrowding. It works best as part of a full and balanced public transit system employing both rubber-tired and fixed guideway modes of transit

  23. blurondo says:

    The Waukesha County Bd. chair liked it and then he didn’t. What do you suppose happened between his two statements? The county teapartyers set him straight. Race is the root of everything.

  24. Carol Eastman says:

    Pushing this idea along Bluemound is foolish. Brian Dranzik says it will run down middle of Bluemound taking up 2 lanes, truth is, loading pad is in middle taking up another lane (aka: 3 traffic lanes). I want the politicians to put themselves in a walker/wheelchair or be legally blind trying to cross Bluemound in rush hour, during winter to grab a bus. Bluemound from Hawley to 95 is landlocked thus not allowing for new businesses along this area. When this group was approached as to where new businesses would be build, one answer was that some homes may have to come down for this to happen. At the first meeting I attended, the Medical Complex stated they were out of parking space yet they won’t provide data as to what ZIP codes their employees live in to see if they would use this line.They have said that information is private. Go to Watertown Plank at 3:15 and watch all the cars exit the complex and travel west to hit the Interstate. Has this project studied if this BRT would be more successful if it ran north/south on Hwy 100 connecting the suburbs to the MC? Running this west of 84th Street will force the drivers attending Wisconsin Lutheran College to park their cars farther onto the Ravenswood side streets making them more congested. About 2 years ago County Supervisors approved not charging seniors/disabled the $1.10 to ride MCTS buses creating a huge loss in revenue for MCTS. Speaking with a person by the name of Dan connected with this project, he stated that would probably continue on the BRT. With running 12 buses per hour (2 each direction) this will increase operational costs but by not charging certain riders, this will put this system in the red also. Reading one of the articles connected to this BRT, they’re now comparing it to a BRT run in South America where they wrote 20 million people ride. WE ARE NOT SOUTH AMERICA or CLEVELAND or any other city they want to compare this to. At a meeting it was said it takes 51 minutes to drive from the Hoyt Park area to downtown, I want to see proof. Mr Dranzik had a slide presentation at the Tosa meeting and stated there have only been 89 “no” votes from the public. There were more than that at the 4 meetings I’ve attended. This city needs so much more than another bus service. This will not initiate the building of more housing, this will not remove 9100 cars off the road per day as the people traveling this route are not just traveling it to get to the Medical Complex. We have a bus system that’s been around for more than 50 years. If you want a bus run every 10 minutes, take one that’s parked and add another bus instead of having to purchase new buses. If this is run along the curb, kiss the bike lane goodbye for those of you riding a bike. I asked if these buses will have a bike rake on them as all MCTS buses are required to have. I was told the doors on a BRT bus will be wider so the bike can be brought on board.The doors may be wider, that doesn’t mean the aisle will be. Isn’t that a safety hazard to those in a wheelchair or if a person has a stroller or small child with them? This group has said this line will bring employees closer to jobs at Harley, Miller Coors, Miller Park yet it wouldn’t run anywhere near these places. Ask the same question to different people involved in the project and you’ll get different answers. Ask if it will eliminate the Gold Line along Wisconsin Avenue and some say “yes” and others say they don’t think so. Wouldn’t that be a duplication of service? During the day, many of the buses running along Wisconsin Avenue are empty, if the BRT is running every 10 minutes from 6 AM to 6 PM, where’s the guarantee that they would be running to a fuller capacity? Anyone who has a vehicle knows it allows them freedom to come/go as the need. Young families with kids are not going to ride the bus when they have Dr appointments or school activities to attend to. People with cars leave as late as possible to get to appointments. I think this project needs to slow down. Wisconsin/Bluemound may not be the right route for this project. Fond du Lac Avenue has room for development, there are low income people living in that area that need transportation to jobs. What other routes have been researched for this project? $50 million could go a long way to improve what we already have instead of putting all that money on one bus route. Over the years this city has torn down entire neighborhoods for projects that never got off the ground (east/west freeway along North Avenue in the early 70’s, this land still sits vacant. Ask the politicians who support this BRT if they themselves will be riding it and get an honest answer. I realize grant applications have to be presented in August, I just think more thought has to be put into this. As one on the panel at the Tosa meeting asked, if this project does not produce as promised, those who pushed this $50 million (to start) project through need to be held accountable to the taxpayers of Milwaukee.

  25. Tom D says:

    Carol Eastman (post 24): You said Milwaukee isn’t Cleveland? What do you mean?

    Milwaukee is bigger than Cleveland (more people total and more people per square mile). Milwaukee County has more people per square mile than Cuyahoga County. Even Wauwatosa has nearly as many people per square mile as Cleveland (the suburb of Wauwatosa, has 69% of the City of Cleveland’s population density).

    I also point out that running buses in curbside lanes still requires people (including those in wheelchairs or the blind) to cross the street. Every bus passenger making ends up crossing all the lanes on each round trip.

    If the stop is in the middle of the street, they cross half the lanes in the morning and the other half at night. If the stop is curb side, they cross the entire street in either the morning or night. Either way, they must cross all the traffic lanes once each day.

    If the stops are in the middle of the street, it doesn’t take a 3rd lane. Just as there is room for left-turn lanes every few blocks, there is also room for “loading pads” on other blocks.

  26. Charlotte Serazio says:

    Carol,

    You addressed all of the concerns and issues that we the citizens have and so far have not gotten any really concrete answers on. Thank You for taking the time to intelligently and logically broach all of the scenarios and true, hard facts. I can only hope others, especially Aldermen,Alderwomen, and key government officials will
    also take this in and truly digest it and not just go with the flow.

    I, also, agree that this money could be well spent on improving our present bus services.

  27. V Marchese says:

    This project will put MANY people OUT OF WORK……no parking on Bluemound Road?….the Buildings are a few feet from the Bus Lane!….Plowing will be a problem. Were will they put the snow, slush, & slug that will collect after plowing?….this is not San Francisco!…..Please Stop this nonsense

  28. Tom D says:

    V Marchese (post 27):

    How would the project put people out of work? Are there jobs that depend on NOT having bus lanes on Bluemound?

  29. Eric S says:

    Put people out of work? By improving transit and making it easier/quicker for people to reach destinations by transit? I don’t see the connection.

    No parking? The project may affect parking in some locations, but most certainly will not eliminate ALL parking along the route. I’m not really sure what building being located close to the street has to do with this proposal, though.

    Snow plowing would not be affected at all – lanes dedicated to buses are plowed just as easily as lanes used by all vehicles.

    San Francisco? Not sure what that’s supposed to mean either.

  30. V Marchese says:

    you know exactly what I mean…look at the proposed pictures…Drive to Hawley road & Bluemound…walk west and look at the street, bldg’s , curb, in reference to the sidewalk. …….the businesses need parking! I have a list o business owners that are NOT happy. just in the first block!….need I go on?, (would you go to a roadside cafe’ with NO cars in front?)….

  31. AG says:

    “Just in the first block”

    So all of 5 street parking spots are going to make or break a whole block’s worth of businesses?

  32. Dave says:

    What the produce purveyor fails to mention is that he’s worried it might cost him a buck or two to have to park his trucks not directly in front of a handful of store fronts on Bluemound Ave.

  33. Eric S says:

    The proposed pictures/renderings showing curbside bus lanes? Or center-running bus lanes?

    “A roadside cafe with no cars in front?” So a cafe with sidewalk seating? And “no cars” meaning no curbside parking or curbside bus lanes instead of curbside general traffic lanes?

    Many streets all over the city and suburbs lose curbside parking at intersections in order to accommodate turning lanes and/or bus stops. This would hardly be a unique situation if it occurs at Blue Mound/Hawley as well.

  34. Gail S. says:

    I think this idea is awful for those of us who live on Wisconsin Ave. It eliminates parking, will make it difficult for us to leave our driveways, and removes our beautiful medians. Gold line buses move pretty quickly as it is. Want to make it faster? Eliminate some stops!

  35. V.Marchese says:

    yes, Gail you are correct….NO PARKING, also the handicapped? they are dropped off on Bluemound….the blind frequent the area , and the snow will be a HUGE obstacle 6 or 7 months out of the year. the gold #10 line is just fine. How about eliminating stops with special marked busses! …today 2 meeting to beg for funding are going on now as we type this. the millions of dollars we are spending on this folly could be used to feed the hungry, help the sick or transport the handicapped…house the needy…… we have MANY business owners (on Bluemound) , employees & clients upset because of this. 11 businesses on 1 block alone are against it…..

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