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Metrobus riders on two routes traveling along 16th Street and Georgia Avenue NW often complain of overcrowding, and now the transit agency has responded by announcing that it will run longer buses on those routes.
Starting in late August, Metro will increase the number of articulated buses — which are 60 feet long, compared to the standard 40-foot-long buses — running on the S1, S2 and S4 routes on 16th Street and the 70 route on Georgia Avenue. On 16th Street, the number of rush hour trips on the longer buses will increase from 68 to 99; on Georgia Avenue, the increase will be from 89 to 172.
The routes are among the busiest in the city, responsible for some 40,000 passenger trips each weekday. The articulated buses offer 55 percent more seats than traditional buses.
Last year, Metro added a number of buses to the busiest portions of the S route on 16th Street. There have also been calls for a dedicated bus lane on 16th Street, though officials at the D.C. Department of Transportation have said that if one is built, it likely won't be before 2016.
Once the articulated buses start running on 16th Street and Georgia Avenue, they will operate throughout the day.