HealthLine

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Cleveland HealthLine logo.svg
HealthLine 1.jpg
A HealthLine rapid transit vehicle drives through University Circle.
Overview
SystemRTA Rapid Transit
OperatorGCRTA
StatusOperational
Began serviceOctober 24, 2008[1]
Route
Route typeBus rapid transit
LocaleCleveland and East Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, Ohio
StartPublic Square
EndLouis Stokes Station at Windermere
Length6.8 mi (11 km)
Stations59
←      →

The HealthLine (formerly known as the Silver Line[2] and as the Euclid Corridor Transportation Project) is a bus rapid transit (BRT) line run by the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority in Cleveland and East Cleveland, Ohio, United States. The line runs along Euclid Avenue from Public Square in downtown Cleveland to the Louis Stokes Station at Windermere in East Cleveland. It began operation on October 24, 2008.[3] Its current name was the result of a naming rights deal with the Cleveland Clinic and University Hospitals of Cleveland.[4] The HealthLine is denoted with a silver color and abbreviated simply as HL on most RTA publications.

The HealthLine's ridership peaked at 5.08 million rides in 2014, but has since declined by over 25% through 2018, with 3.7 million rides that year.[5]

The Healthline is tied with Connecticut Transit's CTfastrak as the second-top rated BRT system in the United States each with Silver rating according to the BRT Standard.[6][7] Only ABQ RIDE's Albuquerque Rapid Transit has achieved the top rating of Gold.

History[edit]

Going back to the 1950s, the city of Cleveland considered alternatives for rapid transit along Euclid Avenue between downtown and University Circle. In 1985, the city commissioned a study called the Dual Hub Corridor Alternatives Analysis/Draft Environmental Impact Statement. The study estimated the cost of a subway along this corridor to be $1 billion and an option that involved a light rail component at $750 million.[8] A further study in 1993 examined additional alternatives, including a bus rapid transit plan, which ultimately was selected by the RTA in 1995. Upon adoption by the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency in December 1995, the name of the project was changed from the Dual Hub Corridor to the Euclid Corridor.[9]

The plan included the Euclid Corridor busway, relocating five Red Line stations and right-of-way improvements on East 17th and East 18th Streets. At the time, the estimated cost of the project was $210 million with the federal government funding 80% of the cost.[9] In 1996, the Federal Transit Administration provided $4.0 million in funds for initial engineering studies. The initial ridership projections were 29,500 boardings per day by 2025. In 1999, the plan was scaled back to include only the busway and a budget of $228.6 million was established with the city seeking a 59% federal government share, or $135.0 million.[10] The final design was completed in 2002 and the project was funded in 2004, with completion in 2008. The total cost was $197.2 million, which accounted for some additional changes to the initial scope.[11]

In 2008, the RTA secured a naming rights deal with the Cleveland Clinic and University Hospitals for $6.25 million over 25 years and the route was renamed the HealthLine.[12]

Route description[edit]

The HealthLine route travels 6.8 miles (11 km) along Euclid Avenue from Public Square in Downtown Cleveland to Louis Stokes Station at Windermere in East Cleveland. It passes through the neighborhoods of Downtown, Midtown, Fairfax, University Circle and the suburb of East Cleveland.[3]

There are 59 stations along Euclid Avenue that serve the HealthLine. All stations are equipped with a fare card vending machine, 24-hour lighting and an emergency phone. An illuminated text display informs passengers of expected arrival times. Between Public Square and East 107th Street, all stations have raised platforms that align with the floor of the rapid transit vehicle, easing boarding and alighting.[13]

Between Public Square and East 105th Street, Euclid Avenue has two "bus only" lanes close to the inner median which only allow HealthLine vehicles passage, reducing delays due to conflicts with general traffic during busy times. Complementing the HealthLine is a set of bike lanes on the outer edges of the stretch Euclid Avenue that connects Cleveland State University with Case Western Reserve University.[14]

As late as July 2010, the trip from East Cleveland to downtown during rush hour was more than 40 minutes – longer than the planned 33 minutes. This was due to traffic light timing and the 25 mph speed limit along most of the route. The speed limit was raised to 35 mph for buses and traffic light timing was adjusted further to combat this issue.[15][16]

Shortly after the line began service, signal priority was discontinued along portions of the line. The decision has been referred to as a form of BRT creep.[17]

Bus fleet[edit]

A HealthLine bus at the Adelbert Road bus stop

The HealthLine runs a fleet of 21 articulated DE63LFA-BRT vehicles, manufactured by New Flyer Industries, each with a seating capacity of 47 and able to accommodate 53 more standing up. The vehicles have two doors on each side and run on a diesel-electric hybrid motor system that produce 90% less emissions than regular buses.[18][19] A low sulfur diesel engine (Caterpillar C-9) generates electrical power to run smaller electric motors mounted on each of the wheels.[20] Each vehicle also has a GPS locator on board, which allowed automated traffic signals to give the HealthLine buses priority at busy intersections, until the feature was discontinued.

Bus stops[edit]

The RTA classifies its bus rapid transit stops as "curb stations" and "median stations". Median stations are located within the Euclid Avenue busway and can only be accessed using crosswalks. Median stations can utilize left- or right-side boarding, as buses have doors on both sides. Curb stations are more traditional bus stops where buses open their doors to the right curb of the street.

Schedule[edit]

On weekdays, the HealthLine runs every 7-10 minutes from 6:10 am to 7:10 pm, and every 15-30 minutes outside that window. On weekends and holidays, it runs every 15 minutes from 4:40 am to 11:40 pm and every 30 minutes outside that window.[21]

Stations[edit]

All stations are ADA-accessible Handicapped/disabled access

Station Platform style Doors opened Location Connections / Notes
Public Square/West Roadway curb left Downtown West side of Public Square; eastbound only
Public Square/Tower City left RTA Rapid Transit
RTA Bus: most lines serving downtown and Public Square; Adjacent to Tower City station; eastbound only
East 2nd Street median left Serves The Arcade
East 6th Street left
East 9th Street left Serves Playhouse Square
East 14th Street left Serves Playhouse Square and TV station WVIZ Ideastream
East 19th Street 2 median right Serves Cleveland State University
East 24th Street right Serves Cleveland State University and Stephanie Tubbs Transit Center
East 30th Street right Central
East 36th Street right
East 40th Street right Serves Children's Museum of Cleveland
East 51st Street right Serves The Agora
East 59th Street right RTA Bus: 16
East 66th Street right
East 71st Street right
East 79th Street right Fairfax RTA Bus: 2
East 83rd Street right
East 89th Street right
East 93rd Street right RTA Bus: 7, 9, 32, 48, 48A

Serves Cleveland Clinic

East 100th Street right Sunday service only
East 105th Street right University Circle RTA Bus: 10

Serves Cleveland Public Library MLK branch, Ronald McDonald House
Easternmost stop on exclusive BRT right-of-way

Stokes/Stearns 2 curb right RTA Bus: 7, 9, 32, 48, 48A

Stokes westbound, Stearns eastbound

Adelbert Road right Serves Case Western Reserve University
Cornell Road right RTA Bus: 9

Serves University Hospitals

East 115th Street right RTA Bus: 38

Serves Cleveland Institute of Art

East 118th Street right
East 123rd Street right RTA Bus: 38

Former RTA Red Line connection at Euclid–East 120th station (closed 2015)

Lakeview Road right East Cleveland RTA Bus: 38
Delmont Avenue / Roxbury Road right Delmont westbound, Roxbury eastbound
Emily Street / Garfield Road right Emily westbound, Garfield eastbound
Superior Avenue right Red Line (adjacent to the stops)
RTA Bus: 3 and 40
Eddy Road / Wellesley Avenue right Eddy westbound, Wellesley eastbound
Lakefront Road / Belmore Avenue right Lakefront westbound, Belmore eastbound
Debra Ann Lane curb right Westbound
Louis Stokes–Windermere Parking available right      Red Line (direct connection)
RTA Bus: 3, 28, 28A, 30, 37, 41, 41F

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (24 October 2008). "HealthLine opens, pumping new life into Cleveland". Retrieved 26 January 2020.
  2. ^ Clinic, UH pay to name Euclid Corridor buses. The Plain Dealer. Retrieved on March 4, 2008.
  3. ^ a b "Where it goes" - http://www.gcrta.org/healthline/healthline-flash.html
  4. ^ "Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority". www.riderta.com. Retrieved 2015-04-12.
  5. ^ "The Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (GCRTA) | National Transit Database". www.nationaltransitdatabase.org. Retrieved 2019-08-13.
  6. ^ "Albuquerque, NM Opens First USA Gold Standard BRT on Historic Route 66". Transport Matters. Institute for Transportation and Development Policy. November 27, 2017. Retrieved April 26, 2020.
  7. ^ "BRT Rankings". Institute for Transportation and Development Policy. 2020. Retrieved April 26, 2020.
  8. ^ "Cleveland, Ohio, Euclid Avenue BRT" (PDF). Transportation Research Board. Retrieved 2020-05-01.
  9. ^ a b Report on Funding Levels and Allocations of Funds for Transit Major Capital Investments: Report of the Secretary of Transportation to the United States Congress Pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 5309(m)(3) (formerly Section 3(j) of the Federal Transit Act). Federal Transit Administration. 1997. Retrieved 2020-05-01.
  10. ^ Department of Transportation and Related Agencies Appropriations Bill, 2003. United States Congress. p. 123. Retrieved 2020-05-01.
  11. ^ Euclid Corridor Transportation Project Before-and-After Study (2012) (PDF). Federal Transit Administration. 2012. Retrieved 2020-05-01.
  12. ^ "Clinic, UH pay to name Euclid Corridor buses". The Plain Dealer. 2008-02-28.
  13. ^ "What it is - Station" - http://www.gcrta.org/healthline/healthline-flash.html
  14. ^ Rapid Transit Vehicles - http://euclidtransit.org/rapid_transit_system/euclid_corridor_vehicles.asp Archived 2008-06-21 at the Wayback Machine
  15. ^ McIntyre, Michael (17 July 2010). "Cleveland allows RTA buses to drive faster on Euclid Avenue". Cleveland Plain Dealer. Retrieved 1 August 2010.
  16. ^ Farkas, Karen (6 July 2010). "HealthLine buses moving slower than expected on Euclid Avenue". Cleveland Plain Dealer Blog. Retrieved 1 August 2010.
  17. ^ Ross, Benjamin. "Big Philanthropy Takes the Bus". Dissent Magazine. Dissent Magazine. Retrieved 5 October 2016.
  18. ^ RTA HealthLine - http://www.gcrta.org/healthline/healthline-flash.html
  19. ^ "What it is - Vehicle" - http://www.gcrta.org/healthline/healthline-flash.html
  20. ^ Euclid Corridor Transportation Project - http://euclidtransit.org/rapid_transit_system/euclid_corridor_vehicles.asp Archived 2008-06-21 at the Wayback Machine
  21. ^ "Schedule Effective April 21, 2013" - http://www.riderta.com/sites/default/files/schedule-pdfs/HealthLine.pdf

External links[edit]

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