Bus Rapid Transit Superior to Light Rail:
US GAO Report Results

Performance Characteristic Light Rail Bus Rapid Transit Bus Rapid Transit Compared to Light Rail
Capital Cost/Mile Compared to Exclusive Bus Lanes (Millions) $34.79 $13.49 -61.2%
Capital Cost/Mile Compared to Bus on HOV (Millions) $34.79 $8.97 -74.2%
Capital Cost/Mile Compared to Bus on Arterial (Millions) $34.79 $0.68 -98.0%
Capital Cost/Mile Compared to All Bus Rapid Transit (Millions) $34.79 $9.34 -73.2%
Operating Cost per Passenger $2.64 $2.57 -2.3%
Operating Cost per Passenger Mile (Note 3) $0.55 $0.38 -31.7%
Capital and Operating Cost per Passenger Mile (Note 4) $3.16 $1.08 -65.9%
Speed (Miles per Hour) 16.8 32.2 91.1%
Note 1: Bus on Arterial is system used by Curitiba, Brazil.      
Note 2: Report concludes that bus "negative image can be overcome with equal service characteristics."
Note 3: Operating cost per passenger mile based upon transit system passenger miles by mode.
Note 4: Capital cost discounted at 7 percent over 40 years      
Source: Calculated from US Government Accounting Office Report "Mass Transit: Bus Rapid Transit Shows Promise" (September 2001)
    Light Rail & Busway Speed
    US Government Accounting Office: Bus Rapid Transit Shows Promise
    Light Rail & Busway Operating Cost per Passenger Mile
    Light Rail & Busway Capital & Operating Cost per Passenger Mile
    Light Rail & All Bus Rapid Transit Capital Costs
    Light Rail & Arterial Busway Capital Costs
    Light Rail & Busway/HOV Capital Costs
    Light Rail & Exclusive Busway Capital Costs

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