The DART Commission selected the planned new Route 60 -- a loop route on Ingersoll and University Avenues between downtown and 42nd Street -- for further study for possible development of bus-rapid transit.
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Five corridors were considered for possible further study.
Route 60 was selected by the DART Commission because it includes many of the key considerations in federal grant applications to the "Very Small Starts" program of the Federal Transit Administration. Those features include etablished transit routes, high-density residential neighborhoods, and an abundance of destinations including two medical centers, three institutions of higher learning, multiple shopping districts and employment centers, and many other services.
An Alternatives Analysis is a detailed study intended to identify potential solutions to a specific transportation problem. It involves transportation planning, initial design of transportation facilities, economic analyses and financial planning. The public is involved throughout the project. It is an objective evaluation that the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) of the U.S. Department of Transportation uses to evaluate competing projects across the country for FTA funding decisions.
A transit agency must complete an "Alternatives Analysis" before it can qualify for "New Starts" grant funding from the FTA. In short, an Alternatives Analysis is an investment study.
"Very Small Starts" is a category of the FTA's capital investment program, for which federal grants are available to local transit agencies. The program focuses on smaller projects such as Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) with a total cost of $50 million or less. Projects that fall into the Very Small Starts category also have a simplified evaluation and an expedited development process.
Rating criteria include: