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The global bus rapid transit (BRT) market size was valued at USD 822.86 million in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 1040.27 million by 2027, exhibiting a CAGR of 8.1% during the forecast period.
Bus rapid transit is a high-quality bus-based transit system that provides a fast and comfortable urban mobility solution, yet cost-effective alternative to considerably more expensive urban rail investments. BRT systems are characterized by the provision of dedicated lanes, off-board fare collection, and busways and stations aligned to the center of the road that enables fast and frequent operations. Owing to the similarity in various features to a light rail or metro system, BRT is more reliable, convenient and faster, and avoid the causes of delay such as being stuck in traffic or queuing to pay onboard that typically slow regular bus services.
Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on Market: Lack of Travel to Decline Growth
The outbreak of COVID-19 has severely impacted the public transit ridership across the globe. Transit agencies have been unable to maintain service levels that have led to significant financial losses. Furthermore, ridership levels are not expected to return to pre-lockdown levels owing to the perceived risk of traveling among passengers and the social distancing norms in various places. For instance, in the first half of 2020, the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) in San Francisco experienced a 93% loss in ridership and the continued downturn in services is likely to impact profitability, which, in turn, curtails investment in new infrastructure.
Bus based rapid transit systems are particularly a necessity in emerging economies as a means of efficient, affordable, and cleaner public transport. However, a shift of the outbreak in countries such as India is expected to severely impact BRT adoption over the forecast period. For instance, in India, buses provide cost-effective access to livelihoods and services for a large number of middle-class and low income families. However, additional measures such as frequent cleaning and physical distancing norms owing to the pandemic induced lockdown have put an additional financial burden on transit agencies that risks the long-term sustainability of BRT systems.
Hence, the pandemic is expected to reduce the expansion of the current vehicle fleets by operating agencies which, in turn, would affect the expansion capabilities of key manufacturers, particularly in the emerging economies.
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Electrification Expected to be Design Direction over the Forecast Period
Stringent government regulations have been implemented particularly in China and India over the past few years to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Hence, manufacturers are pivoting towards the production of battery-electric buses as they are heavily subsidized in many countries owing to their environment-friendly operation and comparable performance to the conventional buses.
For instance, in 2019, Tata Motors secured the largest electric bus contract in India to supply 300 e-buses for operation in Ahmedabad’s BRT corridor. These buses are expected to provide 20% better energy consumption, 50% lower fuel costs, and lower maintenance downtime, as compared to diesel buses. Hence, the greater adoption of hybrid and battery-powered buses is anticipated to positively impact the growth of the market.
Increasing Road Safety Expected to Propel Adoption of BRT Systems
Bus rapid transit corridors can help to reduce the frequency of traffic incidents, injuries, and fatalities and hence improve traffic safety. For instance, a recent study has indicated that the TransMilenio BRT in Bogota has contributed to the reductions in crashes and injuries on two of the system's main corridors. Furthermore, safety impact assessments conducted by EMBARQ on before and after data for four BRT systems in India, Australia, and Latin America showed a significant reduction in the injuries and fatalities, as well as crashes that resulted in property damage.
Hence, an increase in the road safety via the implementation of BRT corridors is expected to propel the growth of the BRT system market.
Reduction in Local Air Pollutants to Augment Growth
Local air pollutants such as particulate matter and carbon monoxide pose public health and environmental concerns. Hence, BRT systems can have a positive impact on local pollution, smog, and the health of the city residents by enforcing the retirement of older and less-efficient transport vehicles. Additionally, new bi-articulated and articulated buses are capable of conforming to the most stringent emission regulations while also transporting more passengers per bus kilometer. Hence, bus based transit systems can have a positive environmental impact which is further expected to drive the market growth over the forecast period.
High Implementation Costs and Increasing Share of Personal Motor Vehicles to Restrain Growth
Bus rapid transit systems are typically prevalent in the urban areas where retrofitting these high-quality systems on an existing bus network is generally required. Retrofitting increases, the costs associated with the project as opposed to developing in the available freeway reserves. Additionally, the share of personal motor vehicles has also increased. For instance, in Pune (India), the BRT system has failed to increase ridership substantially over the past few years owing to the infrequency of buses. Hence, considerable infrastructure costs and the rising preference towards personal mobility vehicles are likely to restrain the bus rapid transit market growth.
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Articulated Buses to Hold Largest Share Owing to Their Ability to Accommodate Many Passengers
By bus type, this market for bus rapid transit is segmented into standard, articulated, and others. The need to accommodate large-volume loading and ballooning ridership has increased the demand for articulated buses which would positively impact the growth of this segment. The standard buses segment is also expected to show good growth in the global market which is attributed to their greater affordability and better ability to maneuver in severely restricted spaces.
Urban Areas Segment Dominated in 2019 Fueled by Changes in Land Use Patterns
Based on application, the bus rapid transit (BRT) market is segmented into urban areas and others. The urban areas segment held the largest bus rapid transit market share in 2019. According to a study conducted by EMBARQ, urban properties respond positively to the implementation of high-quality bus-based transportation. The economic development in terms of higher property values and changes in land-use patterns owing to the transit-oriented BRT development has been observed. Hence, these factors are attributed to the dominance of this segment in the market.
Asia Pacific Bus Rapid Transit Market Size, 2019 (USD Million)
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The transportation development in many Asian cities is too rapid and uncontrolled which poses numerous problems to human welfare and the environment. Thus, there is a greater need for a high-capacity, affordable, and ecologically friendly public mode of transportation that can utilize alternative fuels. BRT systems are capable of fulfilling these criteria and hence, an increasing adoption of these systems is expected in Asia Pacific over the forecast period.
The market in North America is characterized by cities such as Ottawa that support transport oriented development (TOD) by emphasizing land use policy to promote future growth, as well as maintain and increase transit ridership. Another example is the system in Seattle where dedicated bus tunnels have reduced surface street volumes by 20% and buses using the tunnel also recorded 40% fewer accidents than those in mixed-traffic operations. Therefore, the successful implementation of BRT in numerous cities is likely to fuel the growth of the market in this region.
In Europe, the cost per kilometer of BRT systems is similar to the other systems, such as in Asia Pacific. However, the annual demand is substantially less owing to the existing public transportation in this region. Several cities in France operate multiple BRT lines and significant financial support is being provided by the government for the expansion of these systems. Moreover, the high costs associated with light rail transit and heavy rail infrastructure is likely to increase the popularity of a bus-based rapid transit system in Europe over the forecast period.
AB Volvo, Tata Motors and MAN are Leading Players in the Market
A large number of manufacturers are producing BRT buses in the market landscape. Large systems such as Metrobus in Mexico City and TransMilenio in Bogota operate buses from a variety of manufacturers, particularly Volvo, Scania, and Mercedes. Special bi-articulated buses operating in Curitiba are produced by AB Volvo and the company's South American bus manufacturing plant is also located in Curitiba.
BRT buses in China are often produced by Chinese manufacturers or joint ventures (for example; MAN and Huanghai produce buses for the Dalian rapid transit) and Tata Motors has largely consolidated the market in India. Furthermore, Chinese manufacturers such as Xiamen-based Kinglong are branching out and designing buses for Zaozhuang, Lianyungang, Guangzhou, and Lima, Peru besides Xiamen's sophisticated bus based transit system. Hence, the expansion of the manufacturing capabilities, particularly in the developing countries represents a significant opportunity for key vendors operating in this market to increase profitability over the forecast period.
An Infographic Representation of Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Market
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The bus rapid transit market research report covers a detailed analysis of the market and focuses on key aspects such as leading companies, product types, and leading applications of the product. Besides this, the report offers insights into the market trends and highlights key industry developments. In addition to the aforementioned factors, the report delivers in-depth market analysis of several factors that have contributed to its growth over recent years.
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Value (USD Million) & Volume (Units)
By Bus Type
Fortune Business Insights says that the global bus rapid transit market size was USD 822.86 million in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 1040.27 million by 2027.
In 2019, the Asia Pacific market value stood at USD 306.4 million.
Registering a CAGR of 8.1%, the market will exhibit good growth in the forecast period (2020-2027).
The urban areas segment is expected to be the leading segment in this market during the forecast period.
The positive impact of bus rapid transit systems on the environment is the key factor driving the growth of the market.
AB Volvo, Tata Motors, and MAN are the major players in the global market.
Asia Pacific held the largest share in the market in 2019.
A reduction in traffic congestion as well as crashes, injuries, and fatalities via the implementation of bus-based rapid transit has led to improved road safety which is expected to drive the adoption of bus-based rapid transit systems over the forecast period.
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