TRANSIT took note of two very interesting photos posted to the Skyscrapercity.com forum showing the PJS 5 and Pantai Dalam (Timur) toll plazas on the New Pantai Expressway.
The photos are notable because of the toll gate structure designed to allow buses to pass through the TAG lane.
Original photo at http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5055/5488639651_8998486c16_b.jpg
Original photo at http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5139/5489233858_5aa27e7f93_b.jpg
So why is this worth mentioning? Because we think that it is a wonderful idea – having buses use the SmartTAG lanes reduces waiting time at toll plazas, which means that service is faster and more reliable. In addition, since the buses do not have to be stuck in “stop and go” traffic there is less wear and tear on the bus and reduced vehicle emissions. A bus that slows down (as opposed to stopping) also manages to reduce wear and tear and requires less energy to accelerate to highway speeds again.
What we do not know from these photos is whether the buses actually have TAG readers (like TRANSIT’s proposed Bus TAG) or simply are diverted to those lanes because they are less likely to be occupied by other vehicles.
Either way, we see that there is an opportunity here to make Bus Expressway Transit (or Expressway Rapid Transit as TRANSIT calls it) into a successful and effective form of public transport service.