Wauwatosa parents and students will protest the proposed bus rapid transit routes that could run down Wisconsin Avenue and Bluemound Road on March 23.

Two groups — one starting from the corner of 86th Street and Ravenswood Circle at 7:30 a.m. and a second crossing Wisconsin Avenue and Honey Creek Parkway around 7:40 a.m. — will protest the proposed plan as they walk to school.

According to a news release, the recent expansion of the intersections have made walking to school 'excessively dangerous' and adding a rapid bus line would make them 'impassable.'

Further, the news release said constant road expansion is encroaching on many Wauwatosa neighborhoods, threatening the character and integrity of the areas.

Bus rapid transit systems increase travel speed as they allow buses to drive in separate, dedicated lanes and make fewer stops than typical buses, allowing them to be competitive with vehicle drive times. The vehicles are often specialized and longer than a standard bus to increase passenger capacity, and they have several doors to permit faster boarding.

In December, a number of Wauwatosa officials decried the expansion of Interstate 94 between the Zoo and Marquette interchanges. One local alderman, Jeff Roznowski, said alternate options like bus rapid transit, electric car lanes, bicycle lanes and a commuter reail should be explored.

The Wauwatosa common council unanimously approved a resolution opposing the expansion of the I-94 east-west corridor earlier in 2015.

In January, Wauwatosa's Committee of the Whole heard a presentation on the topic by representatives of the Southern Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission, an entity with staff assisting Milwaukee County in planning efforts.

Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele announced last year the county would explore the development of a bus rapid transit system in the corridor between the region's two largest job centers, downtown Milwaukee and the Milwaukee Regional Medical Center in Wauwatosa.

In the event of rain or snow, the makeup protest date will be Monday, April 4 at the same time and locations.

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