COSTS AND SCALE OF BUS SERVICES

This paper challenges the assumption that large buses in large organizations with subsidies to produce optimum frequencies are the best arrangement for urban road passenger transport. It is shown that in theory small buses are often appropriate, giving the best frequencies and speeds and suitably low average passenger waiting times. Direct observations of minibus services in a number of cities tentatively demonstrate the veracity of the theory. The best institutional organization is not the large firm or municipal authority, but the small firm, often the owner/driver. There is no case for any substantial subsidy for appropriately organized urban bus transport. This paper discusses in detail economies and subsidies in bus business (economies and externalities, profitable adjustments of bus frequencies, bus size, waiting and travel time, simple model of bus size, and regulation and consequences). Case Studies (Belfast, Buenos Aires, Bangkok, Chiengmar, Hong Kong, Istanbul, Manila and Tegucigalpa) are examined and the empirical evidence is summarized. The benefits of minibuses is analyzed in the particular case of Kuala Lumpur.

  • Corporate Authors:

    World Bank

    1818 H Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20433
  • Authors:
    • Walters, A A
  • Publication Date: 1979-4

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 49 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00308524
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: May 7 1980 12:00AM