León, Mexico, a city of 1.3 million people, launched the second phase of its Integrated Transport System (ITS) in August 2010. The system’s operations were optimized with 10 new stations and 5 additional kilometers of bus-only lanes, plus 29 new high-quality articulated buses that are expected to remove more than 100 polluting buses from the road. The most important economic and environmental benefits of the system’s expansion come from increased integration between bus rapid transit, feeder and auxiliary lines. Now, 69 out of 100 public bus routes are physically integrated with the city’s Optibús BRT system, representing about 70% of the city’s public transport trips.
The expansion of the system marks a significant milestone for León, which launched its inaugural Optibús corridor in 2003, becoming the first Mexican city to implement a BRT system. By 2008, because of its popularity, ridership on Optibús had exceeded the system’s capacity, at 220,000 trips per day. The City of Leon has since worked to restructure the city’s public transportation and expand Optibús’ service to maintain its success.