The Transit Elevated Bus (TEB) is a proposed new bus concept where a guided bus straddles above road traffic, giving it the alternative names such as straddling bus, straddle bus, land airbus or tunnel bus by international media.
The idea of TEB was originally proposed by Craig Hodgetts and Lester Walker in 1969, as a public transport concept called “The Bos-Wash Landliner.” Later it was designed by Shenzhen Hashi Future Parking Equipment Company, and the concept, known as 3D Express Bus at the time, was unveiled at the 13th Beijing International High-tech Expo in May 2010. A working scale model was showcased at the 2016 Beijing International High-Tech Expo.
A trial was scheduled to begin in Beijing’s Mentougou District by late 2010. However the project was not given authorisation by the district authorities because the technology was considered to be too immature, and further trials are subject to the development of a concept to prove the system actually works. The city of Manaus, Brazil, has also evaluated the option of installing a straddle bus in its city streets. At the time of the 2016 unveiling of the scale model, it was reported that a prototype will be deployed by mid 2016 in Qinhuangdao. Other four Chinese cities, Nanyang, Shenyang, Tianjin and Zhoukou, have also signed contracts for pilot projects involving the construction of test tracks beginning in 2016.
The bus will run along a fixed route, and its passenger compartment spans the width of two traffic lanes. The TEB-1 isn’t quite street-ready, so for now it’s being confined to a 300m test-track, reports Shanghaiist. The 7.7-metre wide test carriage can carry 300 passengers, although these will be linked up in real-world deployments to ferry around up to 1,200 people at once. Prospective passengers can now get a glimpse of what it will be like to ride inside the futuristic electric bus-tram.
While the TEB should have no problem gliding over cars and vans, exactly what will happen when faced with a larger truck or lorry remains unclear. Presumably there will be dedicated lanes for cars and TEBs and separate ones for larger vehicles.