It is often suggested that the United States adopt policies similar to those of European countries to increase public transportation ridership and sustainability of the transport system. On the basis of two national travel surveys, socioeconomic and geographic characteristics of public transportation riders in Germany and the United States are compared, and the differences in public transportation policies in the two countries are analyzed. Dissimilar policies can help account for variability in ridership not explained by socioeconomic and geographic differences. In both countries, public transportation ridership increases with population density and metropolitan area size and decreases with rising income, car ownership, and household distance from a public transportation stop. However, supported by better policies, German public transportation systems can attract more riders from all groups of society. For example, Germans living in households with more cars than…
Objective. Public transportation services are important in many ways. They provide mobility, can shape land use and development patterns, generate jobs and enable economic growth, and support public policies regarding energy use, air quality and carbon emissions. All of these characteristics can be important when considering the benefits, costs and optimal investment levels for public transportation. This report focuses solely on just one aspect – how investment in public transportation affects the economy in terms of employment, wages an business income. It specifically addresses the issue of how various aspects of the economy are affected by decisions made regarding investment in public transportation.
This study examines the impact of street network connectivity on transit patronage. The aim is to better understand how connectivity affects the decision to use public transportation after we control for population density and the effect of walking distance from the transit station. Data on population densities, transit service features, and annual average daily station boardings are drawn from Chicago (CTA), Dallas (DART), and Atlanta (MARTA). Results suggest that metric reach, which measures the street length that is accessible within a walking range, has significant impact on ridership levels jointly with population density and two attributes of transit service features. In particular, the estimates indicate that metric reach is a stronger predictor of transit use than station area population densities.
This paper explores how the quality of the pedestrian environment around transit stops relates with transit ridership. The primary hypothesis tested is that transit tripmaking is higher in urban environments that are more conducive to non-motorized travel, given that bus transit systems are most frequently accessed via walking or biking. A secondary goal is to contribute to an improved understanding of the measurement of the built environment in geographic information systems (GIS). A composite measure of walkability—incorporating land use mix, density and street patterns—was developed for all transit stops in San Diego’s Metropolitan Transit Systems service area and used as a measure of the built environment. Findings indicate a small but significant, positive relationship between the walkability of the built environment and transit ridership.
New ways of using bus transit have evolved in the United States over that past decade. Los Angeles’ Metro is unique in that it now operates all fixed-route urban bus and rail transit modes. This allows us, for the first time, to compare how these modes perform without the differences in labor costs, operating practices, and other externalities that can easily confuse modal comparisons.
Calgary has seen record levels of growth over the last few years and population and economic growth is expected to continue in the future. Over the next 60 years the population in the city itself is expected to grow from approximately 1 million to 2.3 million persons, with another .5 million people in the surrounding region. This level of growth offers the opportunity, and the need, to shape the future land use and transportation patterns of Calgary.
This document is intended to provide the reader with the context and background that has helped shape the Portland Streetcar System Concept Plan. The document summarizes the technical research and experience to date with streetcar service in Portland and elsewhere.