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Transit Program Accelerator: Better Buses in Denver & Indianapolis

transit-island-downtown-webLast month, in partnership with TransitCenter, NACTO conducted multi-day ‘roadshow’ workshops in Indianapolis and Denver as part of the Transit Program Accelerator, an initiative that is taking the concepts from the Transit Street Design Guide from book to implementation in four cities across the country.

On the heels of a recently-passed transit referendum, Indianapolis is well-positioned to increase connectivity, improve access to opportunities, and knit together neighborhoods through well-designed transit streets.

In the city, NACTO staff worked with IndyGo, civic groups, community members, and the Indianapolis Department of Public Works to reimagine a underutilized one-way street as two-way, making transit more effective and easy to use, providing safer biking and walking conditions, and improving economic viability along the corridor. With insight and peer exchange from Portland’s TriMet and the City of Lousiville, the project’s vision is promising, with the potential to serve as a model for future neighborhood-oriented projects in Indianapolis and beyond.

Closer to the Rockies, progress continues apace in Denver, with planning for a vital multi-modal transit corridor well underway. Over two packed days, staff from the City & County of Denver and Denver’s Regional Transportation District (RTD) worked with leading practitioners from peer cities and agencies, including New York City, San Francisco, and Minneapolis’ Metro Transit, to develop staff capacity and learn about cutting-edge street design and operations strategies.

Through a series of design exercises, this new knowledge was put into motion. Denver staff and their peers developed conceptual street designs for pair of major transit corridors, working through ideas to set the bus free and make transit more reliable throughout the day. Additionally, attendees dove deep into strategies to balance transit priority with safe and inviting places to bike, walk, and do business on a bustling commercial corridor.

Cities continue leading the way, laying the groundwork for efficient, sustainable mobility. Stay tuned for dispatches from all of the Transit Program Accelerator cities as NACTO and TransitCenter continue to train cities in best practices from the Transit Street Design Guide, and guide projects toward implementation. Next up: Oakland, California and Cambridge, Massachusetts!