Bringing BRT to Grand Rapids
The Silver Line offers more than just the BRT basics. With innovative features like real-time lighting via each shelter’s rooftop columns that transitions from white to green within one minute of a bus docking, it is easy for approaching passengers to gauge whether they can reach the platform in time to catch the next bus. Level boarding ensures all platforms are at the same elevation as bus doors, providing a smooth transition for passengers by eliminating the need to step up or down when entering and exiting the vehicle. With level platforms and precision docking, stations allow for full wheelchair accessibility without ramps. Stainless steel sheltered bus stations also feature snowmelt systems underneath the platforms to combat Michigan’s snowy winters and keep riders safe while they wait.
Delivered through open and honest communication between the CDM Smith design team, The Rapid and local stakeholders, the Silver Line’s increasing ridership has fostered economic growth along the corridor. Existing businesses are now more accessible and the increase in passengers along the corridor create opportunities for new businesses.
Completed on time and $5 million under budget, the Silver Line is inspiring cities near and far to consider how BRT can provide convenient transit and rejuvenate communities. In fact, the project sparked Michigan to consider a second BRT—the Laker Line—to serve transit between Grand Valley State University and downtown Grand Rapids on Lake Michigan Drive.