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Bus Plus FAQ's

Frequently Asked Questions about BusPlus

Rapid Transit Service on Route 5

What is BusPlus?

BusPlus, CDTA’s version of Bus Rapid Transit (BRT), is a premium, limited stop service along the 17-mile stretch of NY Route 5 between downtown Albany and downtown Schenectady. BusPlus combines the benefits of commuter rail with the flexibility and cost advantages of buses, offering limited stop operation which moves customers quickly and efficiently.

What makes BusPlus different?

  • Faster Service: BusPlus reduces the number of stops by 80%, significantly shortening travel times.
  • Frequency: BusPlus buses arrive at regular times throughout the day.
  • Convenience: BusPlus stations provide shelter and security plus customers will benefit from park-n-ride lots located along the route.
  • Accessibility: BusPlus vehicles are low-floor, no-step buses for easy and quick boarding with bike racks on the front for easy storage.
  • Environmental: Hybrid technology adds to the environmental benefits, while LED lighting on the buses and in stations allows for easy recognition and added safety.

Why Does the Capital Region Need BusPlus?

NY Route 5 (Central Avenue/State Street) is the busiest travel corridor in the Capital Region, serving more than 3.7 million CDTA riders each year. This affordable and efficient service gets people to work, reduces traffic congestion and provides parking demand solutions.

Where Can I Find BusPlus Service?

BusPlus began operation on NY Route 5 (Central Avenue/State Street) in April 2011, with new silver and red hybrid buses, stations, and limited stop service. BusPlus service on NY Route 5 is the first of a proposed 40-mile Bus Rapid Transit network with the both the River and Washington/Western Avenue corridors undergoing analysis for BRT service.

What is Limited-Stop Bus Service?

BusPlus’ limited stop bus service operates similar to local routes but with fewer stops made only at major intersections, landmarks, or at transfer points to other routes in the CDTA system. BusPlus stations are located at 19 of the busiest stops, providing service to a majority of customers who need it most often.

How Do I Find BusPlus Stations?

BusPlus stations are easily identifiable by a tall vertical pylon, next to red and silver stations featuring real time information signs and other amenities. BusPlus schedules are located on CDTA buses, available online at or by using CDTA’s BusPlus application on your mobile device.

How Does BusPlus Affect Other CDTA Services?

BusPlus provides customers an innovative, reliable and efficient transportation option. Local service (Route #1 & Route #355) complements BusPlus, and a simple transfer to any local route on NY Route 5 allows easy access for additional travel choices.

Where are the 19 BusPlus Stations?

Station Name


Closest Intersection

Liberty Park/SCCC

City of Schenectady


Downtown/Train Station

City of Schenectady


Veeder/Nott Terrace

City of Schenectady



City of Schenectady



City of Schenectady



City of Schenectady

NY7 (Crosstown)


Town of Niskayuna

Balltown Road

New Karner

Town/Village of Colonie

New Karner

Village Center

Village of Colonie



Town of Colonie

Wolf Road

West Mall

City of Albany


North Allen

City of Albany

North Allen

North Manning

City of Albany

North Manning


City of Albany

Quail Street


City of Albany

Lark Street


City of Albany

Hawk Street

South Pearl

City of Albany

South Pearl


City of Albany

State Street

Albany Bus Terminal

City of Albany

Green Street

When Does BusPlus Service Operate?

Weekday BusPlus service runs Monday-Friday from 4AM – 1AM
Saturday BusPlus service runs from 6AM – 11PM
Sunday BusPlus service runs from 7AM – 6PM

What Does It Cost to Ride BusPlus?

The BusPlus fare is $2 for cash customers. CDTA riders who use Swiper cards or other pre-paid fare media products will pay $1.50 or less per ride.

How Does BusPlus Work With Local Service on NY Route 5?

All local service on NY Route 5 meets at the Colonie stations (Northway Mall/Colonie Center) to connect with other local routes or BusPlus. Adding BusPlus gives customers more travel choices as the number of trips have increased and service hours extended to meet demand:

  • Route #1 will stop at all local stops AND BusPlus stations between Broadway in downtown Albany and the Colonie station (Colonie Center).
  • Route #355 will stop at all local stops AND BusPlus stations between Liberty Park in Schenectady and the Colonie stations (Northway Mall or Colonie Center).
  • BusPlus service along the entire NY Route 5 Corridor from Schenectady to Albany

What About CDTA Express Services?

CDTA Express trips originate at Park-N-Ride lots on NY Route 5, and travel by freeway directly to Empire State Plaza before circulating downtown but do not offer local service.

CDTA’s Two Distinct Express Routes:

  • Route #530 - Rotterdam Square Mall to Empire State Plaza via the Thruway – CDTA has 100 shared-use spaces at the Rotterdam Square Mall.
  • Route #531 - St. Luke’s & Woodlawn Plaza to Empire State Plaza via Crosstown/890-Thruway – The St. Luke’s and Woodlawn Park–N-Ride lots offer an additional CDTA express run with more than 150 shared-use spaces available.

How is BusPlus Service Faster Than the Regular Bus?

BusPlus shortens travel times by offering customers just 19 stops in either direction (East or West) instead of the 90 used by local routes. Queue jump lanes and traffic signal priority technology at major intersections help buses maintain expedited travel times. The NY Route 5 corridor has three queue-jump locations: one in the eastbound direction at the State Street/Veeder Avenue/Nott Terrace intersection and two in the westbound direction. The westbound locations are at the Central Avenue/Wolf Road and Central Avenue/New Karner Road intersections in the Town of Colonie. Traffic Signal Priority Systems are installed at more than 40 intersections and extend the green light for BusPlus to advance.

How Do I Access Real Time Passenger Information From My Computer or Mobile Device?

Customers can receive live predictions and sign up for alerts by logging onto The Bus Time home page provides links to see estimated arrival times, use on-demand text messaging, sign up for email notifications and to track BusPlus on a map. Bus Time information is available on traditional computers, web-enabled smart phones, text messaging, and e-mail.

What Types of Vehicles are Used?

BusPlus service uses new, environmentally-friendly hybrid electric buses. The red and silver color scheme makes them easily identifiable.

How Do You Identify BusPlus Stations and Vehicles?

BusPlus’ red and silver branding scheme helps riders identify this new service. There will be a total of 36 red and silver BusPlus stations along NY Route 5 featuring rail-like amenities including designation pylons along with upgraded indoor/outside seating.

Updated: January 14, 2013