Welcome to our brand new website!

We are very pleased to launch the website for our Across Latitudes and Cultures – Bus Rapid Transit Centre of Excellence. We expect it to be a main tool to communicate our findings and inform about educational opportunities, but also to show what other actors worldwide are doing regarding BRT projects.

The main goal of this Centre of Excellence will be to develop a new framework for the planning, design, financing, implementation and operation of BRT in different urban areas, giving clear guidelines to decision makers on when and how BRT projects can effectively enhance mobility and meet accessibility needs. We expect these guidelines to be a major milestone to change the way decision makers address investment and design decisions in configuring urban mobility systems. An essential goal is to make the knowledge developed through the CoE widely available to support more successful BRT deployment, and in particular to identify elements which are transferable between existing and prospective BRT systems and elements that are project site specific. Our focus will not only be at the BRT project level, but also on how BRT projects interact with other elements of the urban system so that the total urban mobility system is transformed and the city becomes a more attractive place to live, work and visit. The proposed approach recognizes that, while integrated networks and not just corridors must be the focus, corridors are a structural element to the connectivity and effectiveness of hierarchical networks. We expect this website to be the main communication driver in this effort.

Even though we do not see ourselves as a BRT-Advocay Agency, we are convinced that the BRT concept is powerful and flexible, and capable of fitting into quite different realities and diverse social and land-use environments. Our Centre is formed by members with quite different backgrounds from 5 institutions of different corners of the world. We expect to capture the full breadth of situations, challenges and responses that BRT systems face worldwide. We feel very challenged for the opportunity of creating a Centre that could act as a nucleus on Bus Rapid Transit for public tranport researchers and practitioners.

Our CoE will build on three main foundations:

  • Social and technical research, providing rigour and depth in problem formulation, analysis and evaluation.
  • First hand empirical experience in the planning, design, finance, implementation and operation of BRT systems, providing a “feet on the ground, results oriented” approach.
  • Political and policy analysis, providing vision and experience about the challenges of implementing BRT systems in real settings.

Our CoE will provide four major outcomes, each producing several deliverables:

  • A BRT Observatory, that will gather, interpret and present data on real cases of BRT implementation, or preparation for such implementation, in the form of case studies.
  • A BRT Laboratory, that will develop in-depth understanding of the factors and relations underlying system performance, be it on the physical, financial, institutional or other dimensions, developing or improving analytical methods and their supporting instruments.
  • A BRT Educational program, that will deploy the knowledge gained from the Observatory and Laboratory in such a way that it generates added value to the real world of practitioners as well as didactic materials to support teaching, education and training for regular and long-life learning.
  • Support in BRT Implementation and Dissemination through the world wide work of the different CoE partners and associated institutional networks.

We think that this Centre will be a quite unique opportunity not only to develop research that will stand at the border of our knowledge, but also to influence with our findings how cities are developed. This Centre will not be successful if it doesn’t get this last mile and reach some decision makers around the globe.

Juan Carlos Muñoz
Across Latitudes and Cultures – Bus Rapid Transit Centre of Excellence (ALC-BRT CoE)