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City aims to speed rush-hour bus ride on South Side

An artist’s rendering bypass lanes for buses Jeffery Boulevard.

An artist’s rendering of the bypass lanes for buses on Jeffery Boulevard.

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Updated: July 15, 2012 3:30PM

Come fall, some South Side bus riders will get a straight shot downtown during rush hour, with plans announced Wednesday for a dedicated “bus rapid-transit” lane on South Jeffery Boulevard.

From 7 to 9 a.m. and from 4 to 6 p.m., a lane will be set aside for buses between 67th Street and 83rd Street.

Between 73rd Street and 84th Street, buses will also get priority treatment at stop lights — green lights will be extended and and red lights shortened.

Also, a bypass lane will be added on northbound Jeffery at Anthony Avenue to let buses get through the intersection ahead of other traffic, with a dedicated traffic signal to move buses through more quickly.

The Jeffery buses run mostly on Lake Shore Drive, shifting onto the Drive at 67th Street heading downtown, on their way to Union Station and the Ogilvie Transportation Center.

City Hall asked Wednesday for bids for the work needed to make the Jeffery corridor plans happen.

Construction is expected to start later this summer and be finished in the fall.

Transportation experts say bus rapid transit helps decrease traffic congestion and gets riders where they’re going faster.

Tina Sfondeles

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