The NYPIRG Straphangers Campaign and Transportation Alternatives today awarded their second annual "Pokeys" to the slowest of the most-used bus routes in New York City. The groups also renewed their calls for city traffic and transit officials to work to boost bus speeds.
The city's slowest most-used bus route is the M23 cross-town, averaging 3.4 miles per hour as measured during the evening rush hour along the route's most crowded segments ... By contrast, the groups noted, a King penguin can swim at 5.3 mph and a chicken can travel at speeds up to 9 mph. The average person walks at 3 mph, close to the speed of the slowest routes.
Might BRT speed things up?
[I]n March 2002, Transportation Commissioner Iris Weinshall gathered transit and traffic experts to discuss "Bus Rapid Transit" options for New York City. Following that meeting, the city took a number of actions, including creating a rush-hour morning bus way on Church Street, as well as enhancing the bus/HOV lane on the Gowanus Expressway approaching the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel, said the groups.
The groups noted that no follow-up BRT gathering has been hosted by City DOT.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg has expressed strong interest in "Bus Rapid Transit" strategies. His campaign platform called for "subways on the surface" in such places as First and Second Avenue in Manhattan, said the groups.