Park-and-ride, express buses plan advances

With less emotion than that teacher calling Ferris Bueller’s name on his famous day off, the Regional Transportation Commission asked planners to move forward with an otherwise dynamic new approach to valley public transit.

After a 20-minute passionate presentation by Transportation Commission General Manager Jacob Snow, during which he explained the intricacies of a new express bus plan that has the potential to save Las Vegans gasoline money, ease traffic congestion and maybe slow the negative effects of sprawl, the commission barely said anything.

After some confusion about whether a vote needed to be taken — it wasn’t necessary — Transportation Commission Chairman Bruce Woodbury encouraged Snow and his staff to move forward with the plan. "It’s an excellent concept," Woodbury said.

The plan calls for strategically placed express bus stations and park-and-ride facilities in the outer valley that will transport riders via an express bus, with few stops, to the center of the valley where most Las Vegans work.

Transportation planners hope the strategy of speeding up the bus system and making it more reliable will attract riders.

The plan will be phased in, starting in fall 2009 with an express bus route from the park-and-ride facility at Ann Road and U.S. Highway 95 to downtown Las Vegas. The express bus would use the high-occupancy vehicle lane on U.S. 95 to provide a higher likelihood for a quick commute.

The delay in implementing the plan is because of the construction of the park-and-ride facility in the northwest valley and the delivery of new buses.

Other express stations and park-and-rides at Las Vegas Boulevard and St. Rose Parkway in the south valley and at Durango and Westcliff drives in the northwest valley would follow.

Contact reporter Francis McCabe at or 702-387-2904.

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