MBTA Starting Better Bus Project to Improve Existing Bus Network


The MBTA announced the launch of the Better Bus Project, a program focused on making improvements to the existing bus network through operational changes, targeted capital investments, and stakeholder partnerships.

Throughout 2018 and 2019, the Better Bus team will identify improvements in bus service that would have a positive impact on nearly 450,000 people in 50 communities who rely on MBTA bus service every weekday.

In early 2017, the MBTA’s Fiscal and Management Control Board adopted a set of standards and goals for bus-service delivery. The MBTA collected riders’ comments and feedback for over two years, which were integrated into the policy. With the policy in place, the Better Bus Project is focused on closing the gap between current service delivery and the adopted policy standards.

As part of this initiative, the MBTA will collect feedback and comments from all stakeholders, including bus riders and non-riders, for bus service delivered out of each of the ten bus garages. The bus network consists of 175 directly-operated routes, five contracted bus routes, over 1,100 buses, and more than 2,500 bus operators.  

Over the next year, the Better Bus Project will:

• Evaluate existing bus service.

• Identify bus service strengths, weaknesses, issues, and opportunities.

• Identify improvement opportunities, which may include service and operational changes, capital investments, and partnerships with municipalities.

• Develop, evaluate, and vet scenarios.

• Implement improvements throughout the bus network.

“For the first time in over a decade, the MBTA is taking a comprehensive look at ways to improve service along our existing bus routes,” said MBTA General Manager Luis Manuel Ramírez. “This time, through the Better Bus Project, we’re incorporating data analytics and customer feedback into this review with the goal of making improvements that benefit the bus network, strengthen our economy, and overall, put the needs of our customers first. Our ultimate goal is to improve service throughout the communities that depend on buses as their principal choice of mobility. This is the beginning of a continuous improvement plan and we welcome the communities that we serve to play a central role in collaborating with the MBTA to improve bus service.” 

The Better Bus Project includes an extensive public engagement plan. Right now, the Better Bus Project is meeting with riders at bus stops around the MBTA system to get their feedback about their experiences and suggestions for way to improve bus service.

The MBTA is hosting a series of regional public meetings starting today, Wednesday, May 23, in Dudley Square; the series will continue through early June. 

View a meeting flyer for more information. The meetings will be structured as interactive open houses. The public is encouraged to stop by anytime to learn more and share their ideas. The MBTA is collecting public input on the top three things transit should do better, transit priorities, and how best to improve bus service. 


Bus Hub


Open House Times

Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building
2300 Washington St, Boston, MA

Dudley Square

Wednesday, May 23

5:00 PM – 7:30 PM

Cambridge Rindge & Latin School
459 Broadway, Cambridge, MA

Harvard Square

Wednesday, May 30

6:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Jamaica Plain Branch Library
30 South St, Jamaica Plain, MA

Forest Hills

Thursday, May 31

6:00 PM – 8:00 PM

North Quincy High School
316 Hancock St, North Quincy, MA

Quincy Center

Monday, June 4

6:30 PM – 8:30 PM

North Shore Community College
300 Broad St, Lynn, MA

Lynn Central Square

Wednesday, June 6

6:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Holiday Inn Boston –  Bunker Hill
30 Washington St, Somerville, MA

Sullivan Square

Thursday, June 7

6:00 PM – 8:00 PM

The MBTA also invites bus riders and other interested parties to share their suggestions electronically through the feedback form on the project website.  The form is available in EnglishSpanish (Español) Portuguese (Português) French (Français) Chinese – Simplified (汉语) Chinese – Traditional (漢語) , and Vietnamese (Tiếng Việt) .

More information, including a link to sign up for email updates, is available at www.mbta.com/betterbus.

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