The Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) undertook a major rethink of the transit network and mix of services to address declining ridership and performance. The Transit System Study (TSS) recommendations built efficiency and effectiveness into the OCTA system to maximize mobility benefits from current funding while establishing a framework for sustainable future ridership growth through strategic service investments.
The TSS identified four network topologies that matched market opportunities with service network strategies: core, emerging core, outer core, and suburbs. The recommendations included streamlining and consolidation to create a frequent core grid with Bravo! Rapid and arterial Express Bus proposed on key structural spines. Emerging and suburban areas were linked into the core with key frequent corridors and included a mix of community and first-mile/last-mile flexible services. The final TSS was phased across short, middle, and long-term timeframes and was responsive to both constrained and unconstrained funding scenarios.
The OCTA Board received and filed the Transit System Study recommendations in 2011, but moved forward with six pilot projects from the Plan:
- Harbor Boulevard Bravo! pre-BRT concept
- SR-22 Freeway Intercounty Express
- SR-73 Commuter Express
- Tustin/Irvine hub corridor realignment
- “Last-mile” station van program
- Midday taxi service replacement
Implementation of the full TSS began in late 2015.