Go buses!

Go buses! A Columbian friend at work explained how their buses have not just the occasional dedicated lanes, but dedicated roads that ran straight through their cities or parallel to highways. People don’t worry about timetables, but just turn up to bus stops because one will be along soon. They’re also cheap. Back home he pays no more than 50c to go anywhere, and was quite shocked at the high price of Sydney’s buses! BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) is not just in Columbia, but across 190 cities.

On roads like this, buses could easily be converted to Trolley-buses in an oil crisis or eventually to hydrogen or something else if aesthetic concerns prevent wiring up the street. But then again, in a serious oil crisis any street could be rigged up for trolley buses. A real oil crisis would see less cars and more demand for oil-free transport. Trolley buses can be something like 5 times cheaper to build than trams.

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As the World Resources Institute says:

“For example, bus rapid transit (BRT) systems are helping places like Mexico City avoid roughly 122,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually and reduce traffic crashes by 20 percent. Not only has Mexico City’s Metrobús reduced citywide emissions, it has also created local benefits for citizens by boosting economic productivity and reducing traffic congestion. BRT systems like Metrobús can have a ripple effect of benefits, from greater access to jobs and education to long-term improvements in public health and road safety.”

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