Transit Governance: Brief Overview of Six Cities
Marla Westervelt, Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation AuthorityShow Abstract
Paul Lewis, Eno Center for Transportation
David Bragdon, TransitCenter, Inc.
Joshua Schank, Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority
Elizabeth Bastian, University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign
This research explores approaches to regional transit governance in the United States through a set of six case studies of metropolitan regions, and defines lessons that can be applied to transit governance across metropolitan regions. The regions included are Boston, Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York City, and the San Francisco Bay Area. The research team conducted extensive off-the-record interviews of local officials and civic leaders, using the results as a primary source. The findings include the following observations: 1) An effective MPO can be a mechanism for regional coordination; 2) Access to an independent revenue stream can benefit planning and operations; 3) State involvement, with appropriate accountability, can provide regional benefits; 4) Performance-based measures improve funding distribution; 5) Board representation and selection is critical, and 6) Consolidation of agencies can help with regional coordination.
Method for Estimating Statewide Transit Needs and Investment Priorities
Jeremy Mattson, Upper Great Plains Transportation InstituteShow Abstract
Ranjit Godavarthy, North Dakota State University
Jill Hough, North Dakota State University
This study demonstrates a method for identifying statewide transit needs and gaps, prioritizing investment needs for statewide transit planning, collecting better data for demand-response transit level of service, estimating costs of needed improvements, and projecting future service needs based on projected population growth. The method was applied to the state of North Dakota and is transferable to any state, especially those with a large number of rural demand-response transit agencies that are not located within metropolitan planning areas. Currently, data in the National Transit Database is insufficient for analyzing level of service for rural transit agencies, as it lacks information on geographic service area and span of service. A survey conducted for this study filled this data need by collecting detailed data regarding each agency’s service area and the number of days and hours of service being provided. These data, when combined with population and demographic data are useful for identifying gaps in transit service and prioritizing needed service improvements. The study also calculated per capita trips, per capita vehicle miles, and per capita vehicle hours provided in regions across the state. These performance measures were compared to benchmark values to identify areas where the transit system is not meeting the needs of the service area population. The study estimated necessary increases in service and funding to meet target levels in different scenarios. Population projections were also considered for estimating needed increases in service and funding.
Stakeholder Prioritization of Public Transport Policy Goals in Auckland, New Zealand
Imran Muhammad, Massey UniversityShow Abstract
The path development literature explores how policy goals are reorganised to facilitate 3 institutional change. The creation of Auckland Council in 2010 generated significant structural 4 change, thereby providing an opportunity to positively impact the hierarchy of policy goals. This 5 research investigates the potential for institutional change by exploring community and 6 professional aspirations concerning opportunities for public transport policy goal development. 7 This paper uses Q-method to explore stakeholders’ preferences for public transport development in 8 the city. Community and professional respondents rank ordered 24 opinion statements sampled 9 from recent central and local government planning and policy documents and the manifesto’s of 10 the three largest political parties in New Zealand. The by-person factor analysis using PQMethod 11 software, based on factor scores (Z scores), identifies five distinct viewpoints on policy 12 development: 1) support for strategic investment in all forms of public transport 2) integration of 13 existing services to maximise availability and reliability, and improve economic efficiency 3) 14 make public transport an efficient, cheaper and realistic alternative to the car 4) increased central 15 government funding to public transport and 5) affordable independent mobility for families. 16 Despite these viewpoints being statistically different, there is strong support for an ‘integrated’ 17 approach to public transport services, and a demand for investment and efficient and effective 18 co-ordination between central and local government. This paper concludes that there is broad 19 agreement over how to reprioritise transport policy goals to make institutional change happen in 20 the aftermath of the creation of Auckland Council.
Is There a Modal Bias to the Transit-Orientation of Urban Development?
Laura Aston, Monash UniversityShow Abstract
Graham Currie, Monash University
Katerina Pavkova, Monash University
This study investigates the extent to which urban development around Melbourne’s transit stop/station catchments is intrinsically like transit oriented development (TOD). A TOD score is developed for catchment land use of trams, trains, SmartBus, local bus routes and no transit areas. Hypotheses tested were that the extent of transit-orientation varies with mode, and that tram is associated with development that is more ‘transit-oriented’ than other modes, notably bus. A census profile for each stop/station catchment was developed. A multi-criteria index, the TOD score, was developed to quantify the transit-orientation of the built environment in terms of walkability (design), land use entropy (diversity) and population density. TOD score was regressed on explanatory variables including mode, to test the above hypotheses.
Results show that development in catchments of train, tram and local bus were more transit-oriented than those without transit. However SmartBus catchments showed no significant effect on TOD score compared to areas of no transit provision. The TOD Score of tram catchments was higher than that of bus and rail, suggesting that the development around tram nodes is more transit-oriented confirming the first study hypothesis. However, once proximity to the central business district was incorporated into the analysis, no significant variation was apparent between local buses and trains compared to tram catchments. Result suggests that there is no modal bias in the transit orientation of stop/station catchments once close proximity of tram catchments to the CBD is considered. The paper identifies policy implications and areas for future research.
Land Use Policy for Transit Station Areas: Park-and-Ride Versus Transit-Oriented Development
Wenbo Fan, Southwest Jiaotong UniversityShow Abstract
Xinguo Jiang, Southwest Jiaotong University
Sevgi Erdogan, University of Maryland, College Park
This paper examines the effectiveness of two transit station-area development policies, park-and-ride (PNR) and transit-oriented development (TOD), by integrating a households’ residential relocation model with a conventional four-step travel demand model. Scenarios are designed on an experimental network with a single candidate metro station to assess the effectiveness of: i) building a new PNR lot; ii) replacing an existing PNR facility with TOD; and iii) developing new TOD communities. In addition, the analysis is extended to multiple stations where PNR versus TOD comparison is made considering multiple station sites with the goals of maximizing the transit patronage and minimizing the vehicle kilometers traveled (VKT) and vehicle hours of delay (VHD). The system performance in each scenario is evaluated with utilizing various measures including transit patronages, VKT, and VHD. Results show that: i) deployment of a new PNR facility or a new TOD can considerably increase the metro ridership and reduce the VKT/VHD; ii) replacing an existing PNR with a TOD appears to be unrealistic due to a considerable ridership loss; and iii) impromptu station-area land use plan may result in network performance significantly lower than that of the optimal solutions. The proposed analysis framework can readily be incorporated in the existing four-step transportation planning tools to guide transit agencies in their decision on system-wide station-area land use plans.
Toward a Typology of Transit Corridor Livability: Exploring the Transportation-Land Use-Livability Connection
Bruce Appleyard, San Diego State UniversityShow Abstract
“Livability” has become a popular term among planners, engineers and urban designers in the United States. Yet despite this heightened emphasis by practitioners, there is still little consensus on what livability means, how to measure it, and ultimately how to achieve it. And while livability is often associated with best planning and engineering practices, this is the first studies to explore its empirical link to quality of life outcomes at the transit corridor level.
Toward this goal, this paper identifies important characteristics of livability based on the literature, presents a set of metrics to measure livability, and then applies a unified index of transit corridor livability (TCL) toward the development of a typology to help researchers and practitioners identify the planning and investment strategies optimize transit corridor livability.
Drawing on detailed quantitative analyses of data gathered for over 300 existing transit corridors from around the US, and accompanied by qualitative in-depth practitioner interviews, this paper uncovers some of the promising links between higher levels of transportation/land use integration and livability/quality of life outcomes, including higher non-auto mode splits, shorter trip distances, transit utilization efficiency, and even lower levels of obesity and unemployment.
This paper also illustrates how these research findings are currently being used to inform the development of atransit corridor livability calculator , designed to empower practitioners to independently assess transit corridor livability strengths and needs, and then identify key strategies to achieve higher levels of transit corridor livability for as many of their constituents as possible.
Complete Streets Policies and Public Transit
Andrew Babb, Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech)Show Abstract
Kari Watkins, Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech)
The notion that streets should be designed for all applicable transportation modes is commonly known as “complete streets”. Many different organizations, including cities, counties, regional authorities, and state agencies have adopted programs encouraging this approach to street design. These programs almost universally discuss the needs of bicyclists and pedestrians. However, it is not understood how well transit vehicles and riders are incorporated into these programs. In this study, complete streets programs of different types from different levels of government across the United States were compared based on a consistent, objective set of criteria. These criteria include the inclusion of transit as a roadway user, guidance provided for running ways and for transit stops, and the inclusion of transit-related performance measures. Each criterion was worth between one and three points, yielding a total score for each program between one and twelve points. Only twelve programs earned at least one point for each criteria, and only thirteen programs earned a cumulative score of eight or greater. Potential relationships between these transit complete streets scores and population, location, and overall complete streets scores were explored, but no meaningful relationships were found, indicating that poor representation of transit is a widespread problem not limited to certain groups. This research has revealed a dramatic gap in complete streets programs with regard to transit, calling for future attention and guidance among agencies adopting complete streets programs.