Raleigh Union Station and RUSbus Facility


I agree with you! Viewing the BRT as two lines would be much better. As we’ve said, what downtown looks like to make it an integrated system is hard to imagine. What I don’t want to see is downtown become a choke point for the system but rather a seamless place to get on and off.

At a high level, I see servicing the two bus stations as “complicating things.” The west street extension (tunnel) is probably needed for this plus there will be an uphill battle in the political arena to convert a lot of streets for BRT-only (this will happen) and let the sky fall when we take away parking spaces.

I THINK the advisory committee wants to see the best plan put forward. Now is this plan one that will pass the politicos, not sure, but lots of ideas are on the table including having two BRT lanes on one street so that buses can go in both directions.

For me, I’d like to get to know the users and the most typical trip types. A 1/4 mile walk is terrible for a transfer but if the system remains speedy and frequent because of that, that might be a tradeoff.

More to come on this and I expect in 2019 for there to be lots of chatter of BRT through downtown.


If the quarter mile walk was an experience that people enjoyed, people might look forward to it!
This would be an excellent opportunity for public art that led from one station to the other. It would also add a significant public art installation to the core of the city, and provide a differentiator to the city that people would have to come to Raleigh to experience.
Make lemonade out of a lemon.
Think something like this video starting at the 1:44 mark.


There are a lot of constraints and it’s clearly going to be a balancing act between speed, coverage, transfers, and the politics of road space. I look forward to seeing how it progresses. Keep us up to date!


What if we created a BRT downtown loop, similar to Chicago’s rail system? Something like Edenton, West, Martin & Person St. Just an idea. Here’s a pic of the Chicago rail loop. I thought it worked really well last year when I visited.


RLine? Don’t we already have that?


Different than the R-Line as the buses going in the smaller loop would still do their normal route as well. Just trying to think of ideas to connect RUS and Moore Square station with all routes effectively.


Well, there’s always that PRT that NC State has been developing/testing/contemplating.


I like the idea of a loop. A rectangular one-way loop much smaller than R-Line with a dedicated bus lane for the entire length might not be a bad idea. IMO Person is too far east. Edenton might work, but also IMO a couple blocks further north might be better. How about a a counter-clockwise loop on Wilmington-Lane-West-Martin. Stops at every corner of the rectangle: Union Station, GoRaleigh Station, Government Complex, and Glenwood South. Something like this map.

A one-way loop means removing parking on only one side of the street. It also makes timing the signals (like Dawson/Morgan) much easier. I think, given a good implementation of signal priority, buses would take about 10 minutes to travel this loop. Adding more stations would slow it down quite a lot so I would tend to discourage it.


I had Just took a look at the link, Question…How many floors is this rendering, ? Just curious. Looks like to be the same as the Dillion, about 18 stories tall, looks fantastic, will make a welcoming addition to the Growing warehouse district.


I’d love to see the old Dillon warehouse being used for the bus terminal to remain as an existing outdoor skeleton with the new building floating above it on piers. Under the new building, and inside the framework of the existing facade, I’d love for the sidewalk retail to be housed in retro/historic buses lined up like a food truck rodeo. This would add an artistic & “museum” nature to the project while remaining practical, and add some funky energy to core of the district.


I like this idea. Chicago also has a the ‘loop link’ which adds BRT-like amenities to several bus routes connecting several transit centers in the Downtown area. The route is also attractive for shorter trips.

A Raleigh transit loop could provide better connections by helping users understand that every bus passing this corner is going to the same place (Go Raleigh Station or Raleigh Union Station) which will also connect me to Glenwood South, Fayettville Street/Museums, and Moore Square.



Interesting idea, I was curious how Raleigh downtown compares to the loop in Chicago:


My personal take on the Chicago Loop is that it is a magnificent piece of transit infrastructure. It’s a fantastic way to distribute riders around the core of the city (well, the “loop” as the CBD itself is called.)

Having used it a few times, I think the size strikes a good balance between accessibility and speed, although I think eight stations is too many (six or maybe even four would be better). It also was built to serve downtown Chicago as it was in 1895; it misses important places like Streeterville that have grown up since then.

I think a transit loop (even if ours is on-street and carries buses instead of trains) would serve us well. We just need to be sure not to overload it with too many stops, and be sure it provides good access to the up-and-coming parts of downtown rather than just the core.


Here’s a map of what I’m thinking… There’s not as many options streetwise as I expected. It also shows the 4 stops in the corners.

Bus Rapid Transit in Raleigh

So as currently planned, does each BRT line terminate in downtown, or is just what you are proposing? I thought the proposed lines were more continuous north-south and east-west? Although, I guess it wouldn’t be too hard of a transfer. If I’m coming from the North and heading to a NCFC game at the Cargill soccer stadium, I’d take green line to RUS station, hop off, grab a quick coffee or just wait, and then hop back on a yellow line bus. Actually doesn’t seem that bad.


I’m not sure what the current plans are for the buses once they get downtown. This was just an idea I was throwing out there for fun. But yes you’re correct, the buses continue farther north-south and east-west I just didn’t want to draw the lines for the whole route.


So what you’re suggesting is pretty similar to what I’m suggesting. No wonder, my idea is based on yours!

The main differences are:
  1. I’m suggesting to use Lane instead of Edenton for the north side of the loop. I see the tradeoff; Edenton makes a smaller/faster loop, while IMO Lane gives a better station location for Glenwood South and Smokey Hollow. Another interesting note is that GoTriangle owns some land there at the corner of Harrington and Lane, including a property between Harrington and West, which would be a great spot for a stop, would allow for Lane to be punched through to West, and would allow them to generate some revenue through TOD like what they’re doing at Union Station phase 2.
  2. I’m showing a different way for the Western Blvd buses to get into downtown, via West Morgan Street and a new bridge over the tracks between Central Prison and the Morehead School. I think this is a best case scenario since it puts a station in a great spot along West Morgan Street and it increases connectivity. I think it would be possible - the city studied a bridge in that spot a few years ago and it was found to be mostly feasible. But if this isn’t in the cards, a connection by Boylan, West Street Extension, Dawson/Morgan, or Wilmington/Salisbury would work as well.

Bus Rapid Transit in Raleigh
Bus Rapid Transit in Raleigh

I actually like your map better than mine! I didn’t take the Lane/West or Western/Morgan connections into play. If those are possible I think it’d be better options.


Lane/West is easily possible and in fact highly desirable since GoTriangle already owns the land.

Western/Morgan would be physically feasible
(reference alternatives 2 and 4 of the city’s Blair-Hunt-Morgan connector study) but expensive and require negotiation with the state for a corridor of land between Morehead and the prison.


I had never heard of the Blair-Hunt-Morgan connector idea before. Thanks for sharing.