Freeway and Arterial Lanes
It is often claimed that a single metro (heavy rail) line can carry the same volume as up to six freeway lanes. While this is theoretically true, new US metros do not achieve volumes that approach such a level (Figures #1 and #2).(1)
New metro volumes are marginally higher than the average two way arterial (major surface street) lane couplet (Figure #3).
1. Freeway lane volume based upon FHWA data at the national average occupancy rate of 1.61. Rail volume estimated at annual passenger mile volume divided by 300, which generally reflects the average daily usage compared to annual usage.
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