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Not-So-Rapid BRT

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If you're expecting sparkly utopia via the CTA's upcoming Jeffery Corridor Bus Rapid Transit line, you might wish to reconsider. The Tribune's Jon Hilkevitch makes the case for considering Chicago's first BRT experiment as something close to a fraud. It won't look like Bogota's or even Cleveland's. Missing criteria for legitimate BRT are full-time dedicated lanes, a smooth pre-pay fare system, and full signal priority. At least there aren't plans to jack up the fares just yet on this antiqued-before-construction service. And there will be some signal priority come spring— on a mile-and-a-half portion of the 16-mile route. The city insists this is a trial line with, presumably, more and better service to come. Geez. Let's hope. [Trib]