The Common Council today unanimously approved an amended resolution that puts conditions on any possible City of Milwaukee involvement in the future development of a bus rapid transit (BRT) line along the East-West Corridor through portions of the city.
Alderman Michael J. Murphy, the lead sponsor on the legislation (Council file # 170541), said the resolution provides clear protections for city taxpayers and city interests if the BRT is moved forward by Milwaukee County and the Milwaukee County Transit System. He said the plan to use dedicated traffic lanes for east-west BRT buses on W. Blue Mound Rd. was “simply not practical.”
“After careful review of the BRT analysis and listening to area citizens and businesses at various public hearings, it doesn’t seem practical to develop and use single, dedicated lanes west of Hawley Road (on Blue Mound). The only way this project could move forward is if the BRT buses operate in mixed traffic,” Alderman Murphy said.
Legislation co-sponsor Alderman Robert J. Bauman said the amended resolution approved today also includes other key requirements and stipulations.
“The amended resolution stipulates that the city ‘shall not incur any direct or indirect expenses, including the forfeiture of any revenue, related to the development or operation of the BRT system’ and that it ‘shall not contribute financially to the development or management of the BRT system, nor provide assistance or management of the BRT system, unless reimbursed,’” Alderman Bauman said.
Alderman Murphy said he and Alderman Bauman will continue to keep a close eye on the County-led BRT project and will make sure citizens are kept informed about developments.