Wake County has more than a million residents, and that number grows by more than 60 people per day. With them comes congestion. The Wake Transit Plan expands access and opportunities and helps connect more people to jobs, schools, entertainment.
The Wake Transit Plan includes four “Big Moves” to:
all Wake County communities
frequent, reliable urban mobility
access to transit
In order to make these moves possible, the plan will:
Increase bus service
- Expand existing frequent bus service from 17 to 83 miles, with service at least every 15 minutes.
- Improve links between colleges and universities, employment centers, medical facilities, dense residential areas, RDU Airport and downtowns.
- Operate routes every 30 or 60 minutes to provide more coverage across the county.
Implement bus rapid transit
BRT creates dedicated bus lanes on local roads so bus operators can bypass traffic and keep their routes on schedule. The plan calls for building approximately 20 miles of BRT lanes.
Those lanes will be on portions of New Bern Avenue between Raleigh Boulevard and WakeMed, Capital Boulevard between Peace Street and the Wake Forest Road intersection, South Wilmington Street toward Garner, and Western Boulevard between Raleigh and Cary. Along these corridors, buses also would have priority treatment at traffic signals.
BRT stops will feature raised platforms, making it easier for passengers with wheelchairs, strollers or bicycles to board the bus.
Implement commuter rail transit
CRT will use existing railroad tracks to provide comfortable passenger service that allows riders to relax or work on their way to key destinations. The line would run 37 miles from Garner to downtown Raleigh, N.C. State University, Cary, Morrisville and the Research Triangle Park continuing to Durham. The plan calls for:
- Providing up to eight trips in each direction during peak hours.
- Running one to two trips each way during midday and evening hours.
- Leveraging the bus network to connect riders with key destinations such as RDU Airport.
Fund local service
The Wake Transit Plan also helps open the transit door for municipalities that currently don’t have service by allowing them to apply for matching funds to develop and operate local bus service.
Expand rural on-demand service
Many Wake County residents depend on rural, on-demand transit services to get to medical appointments, grocery stores and other necessary destinations. The plan will increase funding to the Transportation and Rural Access (TRACS) demand-response system that serves the elderly and those living with disabilities throughout the county.
What is the estimated cost of the plan, and how will we pay for it?
It will cost about $2.3 billion to build and operate the elements of this plan over the first 10 years.
A combination of local, state and federal dollars as well as farebox revenue will be used. The main funding source is the local half-cent sales tax that Wake County voters approved Nov. 8, 2016. Local funding also includes increased vehicle registration fees.