In December, 2010 the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority (NJTPA) and NJ TRANSIT completed a comprehensive needs analysis of bus, shuttle and ridesharing options in a study area that includes large portions of Sussex and Morris Counties, northern Warren County, and western Passaic County.
The Northwest New Jersey Bus Study identifies opportunities to address traffic congestion by increasing the use of transit and ridesharing in this fast-growing area and give residents and workers greater access to jobs and other destinations. It also responds to a variety of recent requests for new or improved transit services throughout the study area. The study focuses on short- and medium-term options for service and facility improvements that would promote expanded use of more efficient travel modes, such as buses and shuttles for local and inter-county trips in northwestern New Jersey. A number of NJ TRANSIT, county/local, and private carrier bus and shuttle routes were analyzed in this study.
The study also identifies locations where new or enhanced park and ride facilities and "transit hubs" would ease transfers between these "rubber tire" transit modes and existing commuter rail services.
Outreach included a project Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) made up of officials representing the four study area counties, New Jersey Department of Transportation, the Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission, the Highlands Council, Office for Planning Advocacy, and TransOptions TMA . Additional meetings were held with key officials from the study area counties and muncipalities, adjacent counties and other local stakeholders.
Additional public input was gathered from two traveler surveys. Transit rider survey questionnaires were administered on-board a number of the study area's NJ TRANSIT and private carrier bus routes. An online travel survey, hosted by the Transportation Management Association TransOptions, provided additional public feedback on study area travel patterns.
Improvement Needs and Development of Findings
The study findings identify a need for more commuting options for individuals who live and/or work in Morris, Passaic, Sussex and Warren Counties.