ROUTES

Utica Avenue Select Bus Service

Overview | Updates | Design | Community Outreach and Reports | Timeline

Utica Avenue Bus Priority and Safety Study Project Area

Overview

The Utica Avenue B46 bus corridor extends eight miles across Brooklyn on Broadway, Malcolm X Boulevard, Utica Avenue, and Flatbush Avenue. The B46 carries almost 50,000 passengers a day, making it the second busiest bus route in New York City. Many of the neighborhoods along Utica Avenue lack direct access to the subway. Therefore, the B46 provides a crucial connection to the 3, 4, A, C trains and 30 other bus routes.

Utica Avenue is also a Vision Zero priority corridor, as it has among the highest rates of injury from motor vehicle crashes in Brooklyn. Speeding is a major contributor to this problem. DOT recently found that over 60% of vehicles on Utica Avenue traveling above the speed limit (30 mph at time of observation), endangering other drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians. The intersection of Utica Avenue and Eastern Parkway, for example, had eight pedestrians killed or severely injured between 2009 and 2013, more than any other intersection in Brooklyn.

To enhance bus service, improve safety, and lay the groundwork for SBS, DOT implemented bus lanes from St Johns Place to Church Avenue in 2014. Concurrently, signal optimization for the corridor was implemented from Malcolm X Boulevard and Broadway to Utica Avenue and Kings Highway. As a result, in sections where bus lanes were installed, B46 Limited and local travel times have decreased 8% to 15% and vehicle travel times have decreased 20% to 25% in the peak direction.

B46 Select Bus Service is planned for 2015 and will upgrade the B46 Limited to SBS while maintaining local service.  The Utica Avenue B46 SBS will include:

  • Off-board fare collection
  • Dedicated bus lanes (extension south of Church Avenue)
  • Transit signal priority
  • Service changes to improve reliability
  • Capital improvements at SBS stations
    • Real-time passenger information
    • Bus bulbs (sidewalk extensions at bus stops)
    • Pedestrian safety enhancements at complex intersections
    • New shelters, plantings, benches, etc.

Updates

Beginning August 24, bus lanes will be extended on Utica Avenue from Church Avenue to Fillmore Avenue. These lanes extend the current Utica Avenue bus lanes, which run from St Johns Place to Church Avenue. Bus lanes will be in effect in both directions. The existing lanes have greatly increased time savings for buses and general traffic during peak hours. Download the project newsletter here (pdf)

Design

The B46 bus route will receive a number of improvements, implemented in a phased approach:

Short-Term, Summer 2014 (St Johns Place to Church Avenue)

  • curbside bus lanes on the southbound side between St Johns Place to Eastern Parkway
  • Removal of southbound bus lane between Union Street to Carroll Street to add peak period commercial vehicle loading
  • offset bus lanes and left-turn bays between Carroll Street and Church Avenue
  • Left-turn restrictions at some intersections to improve traffic flow
  • Traffic signalization improvements to improve traffic flow
Short-Term: Summer 2015 (Church Avenue to Fillmore Avenue)
  • Offset bus lanes and left-turn bays south of Church Avenue
  • Left-turn restrictions at some intersections to improve traffic flow
  • Transit signal priority for buses

Long-Term: 2016-2017

  • Resurfacing and restoration of pavement markings
  • Bus bulbs at SBS stations south of Eastern Parkway
  • Pedestrian safety improvements: curb extensions, pedestrian islands, high-visibility crosswalks

Community Outreach and Reports

Community outreach for the project was conducted through a series of presentations, meetings, and engagement with Community Boards, local merchants, residents, and stakeholders to identify issues, propose options, and gain feedback for the design of the project.

Community Advisory Committee

DOT and MTA have convened a Community Advisory Committee to provide guidance for the Utica Avenue Select Bus Service project. The committee meets throughout the project's planning phase and is comprised of a broad range of stakeholders, including elected officials, Community Board, community groups, and major area institutions.

February 4, 2015: Community Advisory Committee Service Planning Meeting Download meeting materials (pdf)

September 16, 2014: Community Advisory Committee Kickoff Meeting Download the presentation (pdf)

Community Board Meetings

Community Boards are local representative bodies. There are 59 boards across the City. DOT and MTA make presentations to all of the Community Boards located along proposed Select Bus Service routes.

Community Board 1

March 17, 2015 (Transportation Committee): Utica Avenue Select Bus Service Download the presentation (pdf)

Community Board 3

May 11, 2015: Utica Avenue Select Bus Service Town Hall Download the presentation (pdf)

April 6, 2015: Utica Avenue Select Bus Service and Pedestrian Upgrades Download the presentation (pdf)

March 10, 2015 (Transportation Committee): Utica Avenue Select Bus Service Download the presentation (pdf)

Community Board 4

March 11, 2015 (Transportation Committee): Utica Avenue Select Bus Service Download the presentation (pdf)

Community Board 8

April 9, 2015: Utica Avenue Select Bus Service Download the presentation (pdf)

Community Board 9

April 28, 2015: Utica Avenue Select Bus Service Download the presentation (pdf)

November 18, 2014 (Transportation Committee): Utica Avenue Select Bus Service Briefing Download the presentation (pdf)

Community Board 17

April 15, 2015 Utica Avenue Select Bus Service Download the presentation (pdf)

Community Board 18

April 15, 2015 Utica Avenue Select Bus Service Download the presentation (pdf)

Public Workshops and Open Houses

Public workshops and open houses provide an opportunity for neighborhood stakeholders, residents, and bus riders to engage with one another and the project staff to develop plans for the corridor that best suit the needs of the community. DOT and MTA will host public workshops and open houses and work with the community to develop plans for bus stop locations, SBS features, and design of the corridor.

March 19th, 2015: Open House Download the presentation (pdf)

November 13, 2014: Public Workshop Download the presentation (pdf) Download the presentation (pdf)

Bus Priority and Safety Improvement Project Outreach DOT communicated regularly with Community Boards, elected officials, local merchants, and residents throughout the Utica Avenue Bus Priority and Safety Study conducted between 2011 and 2014.

2011
Presentation to stakeholders, including Brooklyn Community Board 8, 9, and 17 Download the slideshow (pdf)

2012
Winter & Spring

Presentation to local merchants and Councilwoman Darlene Mealy Download the slideshow (pdf) Presentation to Council Member Darlene Mealy
Project update presentation to stakeholder groupDownload the slideshow (pdf) Project update presentation to Councilman Jumaane Williams

2013
Fall

Presentation to Brooklyn Community Board 8 Download the slideshow (pdf) Presentation to Brooklyn Community Board 17 Download the slideshow (pdf) Presentation to Brooklyn Community Board 9 Download the slideshow (pdf)

Timeline

April 2009
Utica Avenue identified as a potential BRT corridor in the Bus Rapid Transit Phase II report

October 2011
Utica Avenue Bus Priority & Safety Improvement study kickoff

Fall 2011-Winter 2012
Initial presentations to community stakeholders

Winter 2011-2012
Data collection of existing traffic, pedestrian, bus passenger, and safety conditions

Spring 2012
Traffic analysis and preliminary concepts developed

2012-Early 2013
Develop proposed street markings plan for “short-term” improvements

Summer-Fall 2013
Presented updated designs to Community Boards and elected officials

Summer 2014
Implementation of short-term improvements, including bus lanes, loading zones, left turn restrictions, addition of turn-bays, and signal improvements

Spring 2015
Presented updated designs to Community Boards and community groups

2015 - 2016
Select Bus Service starts and implementation of capital improvements including bus bulbs and curb extensions