Emerald Express

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Emerald Express (EmX)
Green Line, Gateway Line
EmX logo.png
OperatorLane Transit District
Began serviceJanuary 14, 2007 (2007-01-14)
PredecessorsRoute 11 Thurston
Route typeBus rapid transit
LocaleEugene and Springfield, Oregon
StartEugene Station
EndGateway Mall
Frequency10–20 minutes
Weekend frequency15–30 minutes
TimetableLTD Route 103 (EMX)
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The Emerald Express (EmX) is a bus rapid transit (BRT) system in the Eugene-Springfield metropolitan area in Oregon, United States. It is provided by the Lane Transit District (LTD) which is the public transit authority in Lane County, Oregon.

LTD chose bus rapid transit after a review process in which several transportation options, including light rail, were considered. It was decided that the BRT option was the best fit for Eugene-Springfield's size and current transportation needs.

The first route, named the Green Line, was opened in early 2007, connecting downtown Springfield to downtown Eugene. There are ten stops along the 4-mile (6.4 km) route, including the University of Oregon.

Less than a year later, ridership had doubled in the corridor, and the city of Eugene was nominated for the 2008 Sustainable Transportation Award, and received an honorable mention.[1] An extension was opened on January 9, 2011, connecting EmX to the Gateway Mall as well as Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend and International Way.[2] A second extension to West Eugene opened on September 17, 2017, adding 9 miles (14 km) to the system.


The EmX system is made up of sections of dedicated bus lanes for most of the route (60%), with normal roads in between. The vehicles are given signal priority via ground-loop signaling to the traffic control system, with special traffic signals at intersections. The vehicles have two sets of doors on the left and three on the right, allowing loading from platforms on either side. Most of the right hand side platforms can only accommodate the rear two doors. Riding the Emerald Express was free when it began operations, but now costs regular fare. The articulated buses are equipped with Hybrid drives which allows for a smooth acceleration from stops and through the various road segments.

On weekdays, service runs approximately from 6:00 am to 11:00 pm. Buses arrive every 10 minutes throughout the day, with longer headways during the evening and the first hour of the morning. More limited service operates during the weekend.[3]

In the first month of operation buses had trouble with the signal priority system; buses had to achieve careful positioning to communicate with the signaling loop, and light priority was not always immediate. Early tests of the system caused the light control systems to crash when signal priority was requested, resulting in blinking reds in all directions until an engineer could reset the terminal. LTD worked with the control software vendor to iron out the bugs.[citation needed]

EmX buses at Agate Station, with dedicated busway visible at right


The cost to ride EmX is the same as other LTD bus routes. Riders may purchase a single-ride ticket. A day pass can also be purchased for EmX which is also valid for standard LTD bus routes. Previously purchased day passes are valid on EmX for that day. Current standard fares for an adult rider are $1.75 for a single ride, $3.50 for a day pass, and $50 for a one-month pass (as of November 2018).

Riders must purchase a ticket using the ticket machines located at each station before boarding the bus unless they already have a valid pass. Unlike other bus routes, the EmX line uses a proof-of-payment system. On the bus a representative of LTD may ask to see a ticket as proof of payment. [4][5]


Green Line[edit]

The first line of EmX, the Franklin Corridor (or EmX Green Line), began service on January 14, 2007.[6] It runs from Eugene Station in downtown Eugene to the Springfield Station in downtown Springfield, and also serves the University of Oregon. Local artist Linn Cook was selected by a committee of artists and community members to create cast and formed metal railings depicting indigenous plants. Each station features a different plant.[7]

The Green line is four miles long and cost $25 million to design and build.[8] The Green Line replaced Route 11 along the corridor. Rush hour travel times were reduced from 22 minutes down to 16 minutes, about 27%.[9] Ridership doubled in the corridor in the first year.[1] For fiscal 2008–2009 ridership was 1,592,122 boardings over 17,583 bus-hours, or an average of 91 boardings for a bus on the road for one hour.[9]

Gateway Line[edit]

The route goes along the newly constructed Pioneer Parkway corridor and beyond that to dedicated bus lanes that were integrated into Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway and RiverBend Drive during the construction of those roads. Service started on January 9, 2011.[10] This 7.8-mile extension links downtown Springfield to Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend. LTD eventually plans to run EmX along all main transportation corridors in the metro area.

West Eugene Extension[edit]

The West Eugene Extension is a 17-station extension of the existing EmX service west from its existing terminus at Eugene Station in downtown Eugene. The extension opened on September 17, 2017.[11][12]

LTD conducted environmental analyses and collected public comments as part of the extension's planning process.[13] A number of route alignments were considered, focusing on West 6th, 7th, or 13th Avenues to connect with West 11th Avenue somewhere near Chambers or Garfield Streets. One alternative placed service on West 7th Place instead of West 11th Avenue between Garfield and Seneca Rd. All alternatives continued down West 11th Avenue to a planned terminus and turnaround in the Walmart parking lot west of Commerce Street.[14] In spring 2011, the west 6th and 7th to 11th was selected as the locally preferred alternative.

Some local businesses and residents opposed the extension, saying that it would be expensive, unnecessary, and could cause a decrease in property values.[15] In June 2013, opponents of the extension filed suit in federal court in Seattle, challenging the extension's approval and funding by the Federal Transit Administration. The suit alleged nine violations of the National Environmental Policy Act and alleged violations of the Administrative Procedure Act. The suit further claimed that LTD had not met requirements for federal funding.[16] The court ruled against the extension's opponents in July 2014,[17] and construction began in March 2015.[18] The Federal Transit Administration awarded $75 million to the project in September 2015, covering most of its $96.5 million total cost.[19]

Other expansions[edit]

The MovingAhead long-range plan adopted by Lane Transit District includes plans to expand EmX service on new corridors. As of 2019, the corridors under consideration for EmX or other expanded bus services are 30th Avenue to serve Lane Community College; Coburg Road; Highway 99; Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard; and River Road.[20]


EmX Green Line
Station Type Location Coordinates Notes Photo
Commerce Station C W 11th Ave at Commerce St 44°02′53.5″N 123°10′13.9″W / 44.048194°N 123.170528°W / 44.048194; -123.170528 Western terminus
Bertelsen C W 11th Ave at Bertelsen Rd
Sam Reynolds C W 11th Ave east of Sam Reynolds St
Bailey Hill C W 11th Ave west of Bailey Hill Rd
Seneca Station C W 11th Ave west of Seneca Rd Seneca Central Shopping Center
Oak Patch C W 11th Ave at Oak Patch Rd
McKinley C W 11th Ave at McKinley St
Garfield/11th C Garfield St north of W 11th Ave (Inbound only)
Garfield/10th C Garfield St south of 10th Ave (Outbound only)
Garfield/7th C Garfield St south of 7th Ave (Outbound only)
Garfield/6th C Garfield St south of 6th Ave (Inbound only)
Chambers Street C 6th Ave west of Chambers St (Inbound only), 7th Ave west of Chambers St (Outbound only)
Polk Street C 6th Ave west of Polk St (Inbound only), 7th Ave west of Polk St (Outbound only)
Monroe Street C 6th Ave west of Monroe St (Inbound only), 7th Ave east of Monroe St (Outbound only)
Charnelton Street C Charnelton St south of 6th Ave (Inbound only), Charnelton St south of 7th Ave (Outbound only)
Eugene C 10th Ave at Olive St 44°02′55.1″N 123°05′37.3″W / 44.048639°N 123.093694°W / 44.048639; -123.093694 LTD Bus Station, Bays T and U EmX pulling into Eugene Station.jpg
High Street M 10th Ave at High St (Outbound only), 11th Ave at High Street (Inbound only) 44°02′55.7″N 123°05′16.5″W / 44.048806°N 123.087917°W / 44.048806; -123.087917 EmX High Street Station.jpg
Hilyard M 11th Ave at Hilyard St 44°02′51.5″N 123°04′56.5″W / 44.047639°N 123.082361°W / 44.047639; -123.082361 Sacred Heart Medical Center University District EmX Hilyard Station.jpg
Dads' Gates M 11th Ave at Old Campus Lane 44°02′51.8″N 123°04′39.3″W / 44.047722°N 123.077583°W / 44.047722; -123.077583 University of Oregon, West end of Campus EmX Dads Gates Station.jpg
Agate M Franklin Blvd at Agate St 44°02′47.2″N 123°04′09.8″W / 44.046444°N 123.069389°W / 44.046444; -123.069389 At East end of University of Oregon Campus EMX Agate Street Station.jpg
Walnut M Franklin Blvd at Walnut St 44°02′41.2″N 123°03′40.5″W / 44.044778°N 123.061250°W / 44.044778; -123.061250 EmX Walnut Station.jpg
Glenwood C Franklin Blvd at Glenwood Blvd Separate eastbound and westbound curbside platforms on opposite sides of the street Glenwood EmX.jpg
Lexington C Franklin Blvd at Lexington Ave Separate eastbound and westbound curbside platforms on opposite sides of the street EmX Lexington Station one side.jpg
McVay M Franklin Blvd at Main St 44°02′39.1″N 123°01′51.4″W / 44.044194°N 123.030944°W / 44.044194; -123.030944 EmX McVay Station.jpg
Springfield C S A St. at Pioneer Pkwy E 44°02′44.0″N 123°01′18.8″W / 44.045556°N 123.021889°W / 44.045556; -123.021889 LTD Bus Station, Bays F and G EMX Platform G.jpg
E Street C Pioneer Pkwy W at E St Southbound EMX E Street Station.jpg
F Street C Pioneer Pkwy E at F St Northbound EMX F Street Station.jpg
Centennial M Pioneer Pkwy at Centennial Blvd EMX Centennial Street Station.jpg
Q Street M Pioneer Pkwy at Q St EMX Q Street Station.jpg
Hayden Bridge M Pioneer Pkwy at Hayden Bridge Way EMX Hayden Bridge Station.jpg
RiverBend M Martin Luther King Jr Pkwy at RiverBend Dr EMX RiverBend Station.jpg
Sacred Heart M RiverBend Dr at Cardinal Way Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend South Entrance EMX Sacred Heart Station.jpg
Pavilion Station M Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend North Entrance
International Way East M International Way EMX International Way East Station.jpg
Maple Island M International Way at Maple Island Farm Rd, AKA International Center Station EMX International Center Station.jpg
International Way West M International Way Symantec Corporation EMX International Way West Station.jpg
Kruse Way C Gateway St at Kruse Way Separate northbound and southbound curbside platforms on opposite sides of the street EMX Kruse Way Station.jpg
Postal Way C Gateway St at Postal Way Separate northbound and southbound curbside platforms on opposite sides of the street EMX Postal Way Station.jpg
Gateway C West side of Gateway St., south of Oakdale Ave. 44°04′25.0″N 123°02′33.8″W / 44.073611°N 123.042722°W / 44.073611; -123.042722 LTD Bus Station at Gateway Mall EMX Gateway Station.jpg
Guy Lee C Harlow Rd at Guy Lee Park Separate northbound and southbound curbside platforms on opposite sides of the street EMX Guy Lee Station.jpg
Pheasant C Harlow Rd at Pheasant Blvd Separate northbound and southbound curbside platforms on opposite sides of the street EMX Pheasant Station.jpg
Type Code: C = Curbside (side platforms) or M = Median (island platform)


  1. ^ a b "London, Paris Edge Out Guatemala City, Guatemala; Eugene, Oregon; and Pereira, Colombia for 2008 Sustainable Transport Award", by Environmental Defense staff, Reuters News Service, Jan. 14, 2008
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ 101 "EmX Green Line" (schedule) Archived 2009-08-29 at the Wayback Machine, ltd.org, retrieved 6-29-09
  4. ^ retrieved 11-28-2012
  5. ^ "Lane Transit District - Fare & Pass Pricing". Lane Transit District. Retrieved 19 November 2018.
  6. ^ RideSource “Free Fare” Zone Created by EmX
  7. ^ "EmX History". Lane Transit District. Retrieved 2009-04-08.
  8. ^ Eugene, Oregon EmX, BRT Policy Center
  9. ^ a b "EmX FAQ, ltd.org, retrieved 9-1-2010
  10. ^ "DeFazio in Driver's Seat for New EmX Line". Passenger Transport. American Public Transportation Association. January 31, 2011. Retrieved 2015-07-04.
  11. ^ "EmX Service Begins in west Eugene" (Press release). Lane Transit District. September 17, 2017. Archived from the original on December 19, 2018. Retrieved December 19, 2018.
  12. ^ Glucklich, Elon (September 17, 2017). "LTD delivers hustle to streets of bustle". The Register-Guard. Eugene, Oregon. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  13. ^ "West Eugene EmX Extension Project Schedule". Lane Transit District. Retrieved 2010-08-16.
  14. ^ "Project Concept Maps". Lane Transit District. Retrieved 2010-08-16.
  15. ^ "Concerns". Our Money Our Transit. Retrieved June 23, 2013.
  16. ^ Bolt, Greg (June 23, 2013). "Foes sue to stop EmX growth". The Register-Guard. Eugene, Oregon: Guard Publishing Co. pp. B1. Retrieved June 23, 2013.
  17. ^ Hill, Christian (July 18, 2014). "Challenge to bus line dismissed". The Register-Guard. Eugene, Oregon: Guard Publishing Co. Retrieved October 24, 2014.
  18. ^ Hill, Christian (September 3, 2015). "Tree cutting heads west on new EmX line". The Register-Guard.
  19. ^ Hill, Christian (September 11, 2015). "Feds award nearly $75 million for West Eugene Emx construction". The Register-Guard.
  20. ^ Hill, Christian (October 14, 2019). "EmX bus service could be adding more transit lines in Eugene". The Register-Guard. Retrieved October 15, 2019.

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