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October 26, 2009

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NEWS HEADLINES

Reno RTC Introduces Regionís First BRT Service

The Regional Transportation Commission of Washoe County (RTC) in Reno, NV, introduced its first Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) services, RTC RAPID and RTC RAPID CONNECT, on Oct. 11, with formal dedication ceremonies the following day. The services operate on a four-and-a-half-mile segment of Virginia Street from the RTC CITICENTER to the Meadowood Transfer Station.

RTC RAPID, which will begin operating with modern, 60-foot articulated diesel-electric hybrid vehicles in 2010, is a new limited-stop transit service that relies on technology to operate more quickly than regular bus service, serving 14 stations every 10-12 minutes at its peak. RTC RAPID CONNECT replaces the existing regular bus service on the street, serving all stops including all RTC RAPID stations.

The new service will receive federal Congestion Mitigation/Air Quality funding, thus freeing up $2.4 million to $3.9 million in annual sales tax money to protect existing transit service that had been threatened with cuts.

As the service evolves, RTC RAPID will introduce level-boarding stations with additional amenities. Design improvements will help vehicles move around traffic, allowing RTC RAPID vehicles to travel faster, and technology will allow the buses to communicate with traffic signals to extend green light time. The ultimate goal is for RTC RAPID vehicles to travel up and down Virginia Street at a significantly faster rate than regular transit buses.

Once construction along the line is complete, northbound RTC RAPID will change its route, turning off Virginia Street onto Center Street to RTC CITICENTER.

 

 RTC Washoe Executive Director Lee Gibson announces the introduction of RTC RAPID in Reno. Gibson is a former assistant general manager of the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada in Las Vegas, where he launched similar BRT service.

 

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