Improved Methods for Operating Public Transportation Services

In this joint project, West Virginia University and the University of Maryland collaborated in developing improved methods for analyzing and managing public transportation services. Transit travel time data were collected using global positioning system (GPS) tracking services and the resulting trends were analyzed to understand the variations in corridor travel time. Special events like football and basketball games were found to increase travel times significantly. Median was found to be a more robust statistic than mean due to the high number of missing values and discrepancies. Analytical models were developed to minimize the total system cost by jointly optimizing the type of bus services (i.e., conventional or flexible service), vehicle sizes, numbers of zones (i.e., route spacings or service areas) for conventional and flexible bus services, headways, and resulting fleet sizes. For the numerical example tested in the study, conventional bus services were found to be economical over flexible services with given input parameters. For the specific instance tested in the study, total costs of conventional bus services were 9.5~10.8 percent lower than the total costs of flexible bus services, by region.

  • Record URL:
  • Supplemental Notes:
    • This document was sponsored by the U.S. Department of Transportation, University Transportation Centers Program.
  • Corporate Authors:

    West Virginia University, Morgantown

    Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
    Morgantown, WV  United States  26506-6103

    University of Maryland, College Park

    Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
    College Park, MD  United States  20742

    Mid-Atlantic Universities Transportation Center

    Pennsylvania State University
    201 Transportation Research Building
    University Park, PA  United States  16802-4710

    Research and Innovative Technology Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Authors:
    • Sanchez, Alex
    • Unnikrishnan, Avinash
    • Martinelli, David
    • Schonfeld, Paul
    • Kim, Myungseob (Edward)
  • Publication Date: 2013-3-31


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Web
  • Edition: Final Report
  • Features: Appendices; Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 65p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01481639
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: MAUTC-2011-02
  • Contract Numbers: DTRT07-G-0003
  • Created Date: May 16 2013 9:57AM