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Transit for Our Future

In conjunction with plans for the revitalization of historic Route 66 and Innovation Central efforts, the City of Albuquerque is looking at providing bus rapid transit service along Central Avenue. This project, called Albuquerque Rapid Transit (ART), will enhance transit service along this important east-west corridor. ABQ RIDE began the evaluation process with a feasibility study to determine the operational and financial possibility of a bus rapid transit system. Recently, ABQ RIDE reached a milestone in the process by receiving permission from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) for entry into Project Development. That is, it will now study the physical and environmental factors and impacts of instituting the ART system. Other efforts underway that are dedicated to improving transportation in the metro area include the City and other local partners like Rio Metro, the Mid-Region Council of Governments and local stakeholders identifying a potential second ART route that could link the Central Avenue area with a University Blvd corridor bus rapid transit system. ART could be an exciting part of Albuquerque’s future.

See the latest project plans on the Project Plans page


The initial ART would be located along Central Avenue where many of Albuquerque’s most important destinations are located, including: Downtown, UNM, CNM, Presbyterian Hospital, Old Town, the BioPark, libraries and shopping and retail centers. The three bus routes currently on Central Avenue carry 42% of all ridership, while using only 26% of resources. Central Avenue is generally considered to have tremendous transit-oriented development opportunity for the city.

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Why is it called Albuquerque Rapid Transit?

Albuquerque Rapid Transit or ART combines many features of rail transit with the flexibility of buses. ART is the most cost-effective technology for the City of Albuquerque’s current population and future ridership estimates. Some key elements of ART include:

  • Dedicated road, lane or mixed traffic route
  • Frequent service
  • Prioritized signaling at intersections
  • Pre-boarding ticketing
  • Level boarding
  • Stops that are anywhere from 1/4 to 1/2 mile or more apart

Albuquerque Rapid Transit will provide quick and efficient bus service with increased dependability and timeliness. By purchasing fare tickets at nearby kiosks, ART can reduce dwell time; how long the bus is standing still to pick up passengers which greatly improves service speed. This combined with advanced signal timing and a dedicated lane allows the ART to move more easily through city traffic. ART, while designed to look and operate like trains, is a considerably less costly alternative to light rail.

Who does it benefit?

The Community
Improving transit options is critical to Albuquerque’s future quality of life and economic development.
By helping customers get to your business through an expanded market area that allows more people to find your business.
By strengthening the school/work connection and allowing the use of transportation time as study/reading time by using Wi-Fi.
The Future
Increasing the strength of the “transit option” can alleviate some of the pressure on our river crossings and connect new housing to new businesses.

What's New

See what's new with the project. View news and upcoming public meetings.

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