ARRIVING LATE IN SUBURBIA: THE BUTTONWOODS-PROVIDENCE EXPRESS AND LOCAL SHOPPERS' SHUTTLE (FINAL REPORT)

TWO SPECIAL EXPRESS BUS SERVICES WERE INSTITUTED TO TEST THE POTENTIAL DEMAND FOR URBAN MASS TRANSPORTATION IN AN AUTOMOBILE-ORIENTED SUBURBAN AREA: (1) FOUR DAILY COMMUTER TRIPS TO AND FROM THE PROVIDENCE CENTER CITY; AND (2) REGULARLY SCHEDULED OFF-PEAK SHUTTLE SERVICE TO NEARBY SHOPPING CENTERS. THE COMMUTER ROUTES WERE SUFFICIENTLY WELL-PATRONIZED TO JUSTIFY RETENTION OF THREE MORNING AND AFTERNOON TRIPS BETWEEN WARWICK AND DOWNTOWN PROVIDENCE. RELOCATION OF A BULOVA WATCH COMPANY FACTORY TO WARWICK WAS FOUND TO GENERATE SUBSTANTIAL DEMAND FOR EXPRESS SERVICE TO AND FROM THE PLANT. THE SHOPPERS' EXPRESS, HOWEVER, SUSTAINED MAJOR FINANCIAL LOSSES AND WAS ABANDONED UPON COMPLETION OF THE DEMONSTRATION PROJECT. CONCLUSIONS DRAWN FROM THE PROJECT ARE: (1) ONLY A SMALL PERCENTAGE OF RESIDENTS IN A SUBURBAN AREA THAT HAS LONG BEEN WITHOUT MASS TRANSIT WILL BE ATTRACTED TO NEW SERVICE. (2) TO ASSURE SUCCESSFUL OPERATION OF MASS TRANSIT FOR A SUBURBAN AREA, RESIDENTS OF THE AREA MUST INCLUDE A LARGE NUMBER OF WORKERS COMMUTING TO JOBS NEAR THE NEW ROUTE. (3) THERE IS LITTLE CHANCE OF SUCCESS FOR SHOPPERS' SERVICE IN A SUBURBAN AREA LONG WITHOUT MASS TRANSIT. (4) THE FULL RANGE OF MARKETING AND PUBLIC RELATIONS TECHNIQUES MUST BE APPLIED NOT ONLY TO INTRODUCE NEW SERVICE BUT TO SUSTAIN IT. THE REPORT DOCUMENTS FULLY ALL ASPECTS OF THE DEMONSTRATION, INCLUDING BACKGROUND INFORMATION, A DESCRIPTION OF THE PROJECT AREA, SERVICE DEVELOPMENT PROCEDURES, SCHEDULING AND FARE STRUCTURE, PROMOTIONAL TECHNIQUES, RIDERSHIP AND REVENUE DATA, AND RESULTS OF THE MARKET RESEARCH STUDIES. ALL RELEVANT STATISTICAL MATERIAL IS APPENDED. /UMTA/

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • PROJ NO RI-MTD-2
  • Corporate Authors:

    Rhode Island Public Transit Authority

    ,    
  • Publication Date: 1968-10-31

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00242026
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Urban Mass Transportation Administration
  • Files: TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Nov 7 1972 12:00AM