The M60 bus, which remains one of the few mass transit options for commuters heading to and from LaGuardia airport, has finally been upgraded to an express bus line. It's now the M60 SBS [Select Bus Service], with its own special red fast lane that nobody else is allowed to use (but whatever, who's going to stop them?).

The M60 SBS Corridor extends from 106th/Broadway in Manhattan, across 125th Street and Astoria Boulevard to LaGuardia Airport. On a typical weekday, the M60 carries over 17,000 riders, the highest ridership of the four crosstown buses, several of which are slower than a grown man pedaling a tricycle.

The introduction of Select Bus Service on the M60 route is great news not only for those travelling to LaGuardia Airport, but also for the many Astoria commuters who utilize the M60 for speedy access to and from Manhattan,” said Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas. "This new service will reduce travel times by as much as 20%, help to alleviate roadway congestion, and streamline the boarding process for the thousands of riders who use this route each day."

Here are more details from the DOT's announcement—if you haven't used SBS before, do note the bit about buying your ticket in advance:

The M60 SBS, featuring three-door articulated buses branded with the blue SBS logo, replaces M60 local service with fewer stops to speed travel times, while the M100, M101, Bx15 and the Q19 will continue to serve all local stops in both boroughs. The service incorporates on-street fare collection machines that allow passengers to pay before they board, as well as dedicated bike lanes along the portions of the corridor where passengers are most often delayed.

SBS has increased ridership and improved bus service, speed and reliability along the six existing corridors, including along 34th Street and First and Second avenues in Manhattan, Fordham Road and Webster Avenue in the Bronx, Nostrand/Rogers avenues in Brooklyn and Hylan Boulevard on Staten Island. SBS enhancements along the M60 line are similarly expected to reduce travel times by up to 20 percent, cutting over ten minutes off the 56-minute trip between Morningside Heights and LaGuardia Airport.

Many of the SBS bus stops also come with wayfinding panels featuring neighborhood maps and real-time bus arrival time displays, as you can see in photos from today's presser.