Many of the most congested roadways in Hillsborough County are on arterials lined with destinations attractive to people living and working in the area. Creative ways of using the existing roadway to move people more effectively was the motivation for the MPO’s Congestion Management/Crash Mitigation Process Lane Operations Study. One of the recommendations out of that study was the potential to designate high occupancy vehicle lanes (HOV) on a section of Bruce B Downs Boulevard.
An HOV lane, a restricted traffic lane reserved for vehicles with a driver and one or more passengers, it designed to attract people to carpooling and transit by offering faster, more reliable trips than the general purpose lanes.
Bruce B Downs Boulevard was a great candidate to study further for these reasons:
- The HOV lanes could be designated before widening was completed.
- The road will remain congested in the future even after the widening
- There are high peak traffic volumes along the corridor at rush hour
- There is already some carpooling/vanpooling programs in the area
- The future managed lanes on I-75 could connect seamlessly
- Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority is pursuing MetroRapid Service to University of South Florida
- Tampa Bay Area Regional Transportation Authority was studying Rail/Bus Rapid Transit Service on the corridor