Wednesday, September 17th, 2008

A online survey is giving commuters and existing bus riders in northwest New Jersey an opportunity to share their views on how the transit system can better meet their needs.

The survey is a key element of a study of bus service in parts of Morris, Passaic, Sussex and Warren counties that is being conducted by the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority and NJ TRANSIT.

TransOptions, the Transportation Management Association for the area, is hosting the survey. Those interested can go to www.nwnjbus.org to link to the survey, which asks questions about transit use, transportation needs and related issues.

The survey provides all travelers – including those in areas that are currently not served by buses or other transit – with a chance to discuss their needs and make transit-related recommendations.

The Northwest New Jersey Bus Study will develop a comprehensive look at the needs for future bus service as well as current and emerging bus service, parking and facility needs. Onboard surveys of bus riders already are well underway.

The NJTPA and NJ TRANSIT are co-managing the project, which will consider potential bus improvements on several critical travel corridors, including parts of Interstate 80 and Routes 15, 23, 46 and 94.

The study will examine existing markets and identify emerging ones for bus travel to employment centers and other destinations, ultimately leading to recommendations for more travel options for residents and workers in the area.

Improvements considered may include new and restructured routes; new or expanded park-and-ride facilities; vanpool, carpool or shuttle operations; and possible highway improvements such as shoulder lanes in congested areas.