At a recent meeting of the BRT Standard Institutional Endorsers, the Barr Foundation, UN Environment Programme (UNEP), and UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) signed on to the 2014 BRT Standard‘s vision of high-quality BRT. The BRT Standard establishes a common definition of what constitutes true BRT, allowing high quality systems to be recognized for the benefits they bring to users and guiding planners as they design and develop new systems.
A central goal of the BRT Standard is to build consensus around the definition of BRT. In the past, minor improvements to traditional bus service have been dubbed “BRT”. But without many of the key features of BRT, such as platform-level boarding, prepaid tickets, and dedicated lanes, these systems failed to deliver the expected benefits, tarnishing the image of BRT. To prevent this, the BRT Standard not only provides a clear definition of the minimum features that make up BRT, but offers a platform for recognizing high performing systems. Institutional endorsements bring the Standard before a wider audience and reflect the growing agreement among international planners as to what counts as BRT.
The BRT Standard Institutional Endorsers are a group of highly-respected leaders in the fields of city building, public transport systems, and climate change. The Barr Foundation, UNEP and UN-Habitat join current endorsers, GiZ, Climate Works Foundation, ICCT and the Rockefeller Foundation. All have a commitment to high-quality public transport and a dedication to its contribution to social and economic development and promote the Standard as a quality check for BRT projects globally.
As bus rapid transit continues to spread around the world, it is critical that systems follow international best practices. High quality BRT delivers a fast and comfortable passenger experience, significant economic benefits, and positive environmental impacts. With the BRT Standard, ITDP and the Institutional Endorsers are working together to bring these advantages to cities around the world, and keep cities moving in the right direction.