Before moving forward in the design and engineering process, the Federal Transit Administration asked for Chapel Hill officials to revise and narrow down their locally preferred alternative for the proposed Bus Rapid Transit system for the Martin Luther King Junior Boulevard corridor. The town is asking the FTA to fund half of the BRT project.
The revised plan was approved unanimously by the Town Council. It ruled out several features, including central running lanes for buses and a northern extension of the route up to Durham Tech Community College’s Orange County campus in Hillsborough. Additionally, a new stop was added at the intersection of Homestead Road and MLK based on public feedback.
Many aspects of the route, including exact locations for bus stops and the inclusion of dedicated lanes and curbed bus stops are still in early design phases.
Mayor Pam Hemminger spoke to WCHL’s Aaron Keck last week about what she wants to see out of the project.
“We want to have an urban designer involved; we want to have some more public input. We don’t want that freeway feel coming into town,” she said. “That’s not what we’re going for.”
After the FTA accepts the revisions adopted last week, an environmental study can begin, and the design process will continue. At the moment, however, the approval process is being delayed until the federal government can reopen.
More information on the project is available here.