Photo by Salvatore Licata
New bus-only lanes are expected to improve bus travel times along Woodhaven Boulevard.

Drivers on Woodhaven Boulevard will have some new rules to follow starting this month.

In continuing efforts to improve bus travel times and reliability, the Department of Transportation (DOT) is creating offset bus-only lanes on Woodhaven Boulevard between Dry Harbor Road and Metropolitan Avenue on the Rego Park/Middle Village border. Only buses will be permitted to travel on the lanes during the morning and evening rush hours.

The proposed changes will affect two 20-foot travel lanes on the right side in each direction, which are shared as parking spaces and bus stops. They will be converted into 8-foot parking/bus stop lanes and 12-foot bus lanes.

The bus-only restriction in the designated lanes will be in effect five days a week, Monday through Friday, from 7 to 10 a.m. and from 4 to 7 p.m. At all other times, they will be regular travel lanes, permitting use from any vehicle. Parking will remain along the curb with all existing regulations intact.

Regardless of time, vehicles can enter or cross over a bus lane to make right turns, to access a curb cut or driveway within 200 feet, enter a parking space, or to quickly drop off or pick up passengers.

The new bus lanes are expected to improve bus travel time and reliability for the nearly 30,000 daily bus riders along Woodhaven Boulevard. It is also a harbinger for further changes as the DOT and MTA implement Select Bus Service along Woodhaven and Cross Bay boulevards in the months to come.

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