OMAHA, NEB (August 16, 2017) – Today, Curt Simon, executive director of Metro Transit, announced the branding of the rapid transit bus service currently under design. Omaha Rapid Bus Transit (ORBT) is a new public transportation option that will be implemented in Omaha in late 2018. Project is proceeding to the next design phase, and with the assistance of the Board of Directors, staff, and stakeholder committee, Metro has developed a brand identity for the service.
“The name ORBT and the graphic represent the constant and reliable path customers will experience each day. The oval tracer and hash marks give the icon a sense of forward movement,” Simon explained in his remarks. “ORBT is short, rapid and memorable, and embodies the forward momentum this project will bring for both Metro Transit and the city of Omaha.”
The first ORBT corridor runs along Dodge Street, which is the spine of Metro’s transportation network. It is the first of its kind in Omaha and will offer connectivity to other major arteries with future lines. The system, which features sixty-foot articulated buses powered by compressed natural gas, increases rider capacity and provides frequent arrivals along the route.
New, modern stations will provide pre-boarding ticket purchasing, real-time arrival displays, Wi-Fi, level boarding, and weather protection. Many will also have Heartland B-cycle stations and bike racks available. The buses will be branded for the ORBT service and feature onboard bicycle storage. ORBT will utilize transit signal priority at major intersections for increased efficiency and easier traffic integration.
Mayor Jean Stothert, along with Curt Simon and Daniel Lawse, Metro board chairman, presented perspectives on the benefits of rapid transit and the new brand at the announcement. “Bus rapid transit is part of our vision to provide a transportation system that is citizen-focused, efficient, well-managed,” Mayor Stothert said. “After years of study and public input, the bus rapid transit system was identified as a locally preferred transit option.”
The TIGER grant was awarded in 2014, and since that time the project has been in the research, study, and preliminary design stages. Several community committees have been involved and provided feedback on a broad range of community needs and solutions.
“We’re doing what we’ve always done – public transportation – but we’re doing it in a new way. It’s called ORBT. Welcome aboard,” Simon told the supporters who attended the brand unveiling.