One year after Woodhaven and Cross Bay boulevards were transformed to install Select Bus Service (SBS), the Department of Transportation (DOT) is celebrating its success.
According to a DOT progress report, the Q52/Q53 SBS has seen a 5 to 8 percent increase in ridership. Travel times have also improved by 10 percent.
Eighty-seven percent of riders say they prefer SBS, according to DOT, which brought off-board fare payment, median stations and all-door boarding to the corridor’s 30,000 daily bus riders.
“This project was a massive group effort by staff at DOT,” said agency Commissioner Polly Trottenberg, “as the project combined innovative planning and engineering with extensive repaving, street marking, expanded sidewalk and median work, which have together made buses faster and more reliable.
“While we were also relieved to see that overall traffic industries have declined,” she added, “two recent pedestrian fatalities along Woodhaven prove just how much more Vision Zero work we have to do to make this crash-prone street safer.”
Other design changes on the thoroughfare included new dedicated bus lanes, wider medians with bus shelters and longer turn bays.
According to DOT, the changes led to a 6 percent decline in crashes resulting in injuries along the corridor. Between 2012 and 2016, there were 129 people killed or seriously injured, among the highest rates in the city.
After two traffic fatalities in August and September, DOT made specific changes at the intersection of Woodhaven Boulevard and Jamaica Avenue, including adding a Leading Pedestrian Interval (LPI), improved lighting and installing flexi-bollards.
Read more on the “success” on Woodhaven and Cross Bay boulevards on the Leader-Observer. The website also features Ed Wendall’s column that puts the BS in the SBS report.