Bus on emergency lane. Benefits abound!Published on February 5, 2024
The bus zooms past the traffic jam. You finish your book, talk to a colleague or prepare your work. Before you know it, you'll be in the office and starting your working day relaxed. Sounds good? We think so too! Brainport Bereikbaar is therefore working hard on the Bus on Emergency Lane (BoV) project. We ask for an update from Rob Soeters, Collective Transport project leader at Brainport Bereikbaar.
Why is the Bus on Emergency Lane project there?
The accessibility of the Brainport region is under pressure due to increasing traffic jams, among other things, and major expansions of the highways are not an option for the time being. That is why the region, province and national government have agreed to work together on short-term measures. An important part of this is a coherent system of well and reliably connected 'hubs'. Or locations where travelers can choose another means of transport. For example, bicycle or car sharing, but also a public or private bus transport line for the highway.
Of course, people only do that if it offers advantages…
Yes, and that is precisely why we are working to ensure that buses can drive over the hard shoulder in more places during traffic jams. So that people not only relax more, but also get to work faster. And you can count on a travel time that is almost always the same. Traveling by bus can of course also result in significant cost savings. Maybe even a car can leave the house. This is of course only possible if sufficient permanently reliable alternatives are available.
Where will we soon see the bus pass the traffic jams?
The first round concerns the A67 section from Eersel to the Valkenswaard junction, A50 between Nistelrode and Son en Breugel in both directions. But also on some parts of the A2 between Weert and Eindhoven. A study is also underway into other routes, for example into the missing sections on the A2 South.
Who is working on this?
Rijkswaterstaat Zuid-Nederland (RWS) directs works on the highways. There is also a guidance group with RWS and several stakeholders such as the Province of North Brabant, SmartwayZ.NL and Brainport Bereikbaar.
Will every van be able to use the emergency lane?
No, conditions apply and that is why you must have official permission from Rijkswaterstaat. Otherwise, the emergency lane will be full in no time and safety could be compromised.
How far along is the project?
The design notes and almost all required studies are ready for all routes from the first round. RWS is now forming a project team with experts needed to realize the BoV in practice (such as permits, tendering and managing contractors). We expect this team to be complete in February/March 2024 and then start making a plan. When realizing the first project, we are also looking at innovative solutions for the construction of emergency bays and their lighting. These are important requirements to be allowed to use the hard shoulder. We hope that we can accelerate the realization time!