EFFECT OF VARYING LIGHT-RAIL DESIGN STANDARDS

Light-rail transit (LRT) is a flexible transit mode that can be implemented in a variety of ways. This complicates the task of comparing it with other modes when carrying out the alternatives analysis required by the Urban Mass Transportation Administration to secure federal funding for fixed-guideway transit projects. A recent study for Santa Clara County, California, dealt with this problem by evaluating four possible variations in LRT design standards. This paper draws on the results of that study. It features a description of the study area and site conditions, a definition of the four LRT design standards considered, analysis of the different capital costs associated with each design standard, a discussion of the range of estimates of expected patronage, and a review of the resulting operating requirements and costs. The paper then presents a detailed comparison of the cumulative impact of these design differences on the cost-effectiveness measures for the bus alternatives that were also analyzed in the Santa Clara County study. It was found that, while capital cost for LRT can vary significantly according to the assumed design standard, the cost-effectiveness measures for the bus alternatives that were also analyzed in the Santa Clara County study. It was found that, while capital costs for LRT can vary significantly according to the assumed design standard, the cost-effectiveness is primarily dependent on other factors. It is therefore concluded that alternatives analysis requires the study of only one LRT design standard to establish the relative advantages and disadvantages of transit mode alternatives for a given metropolitan area. /Authors/

Media Info

  • Media Type: Print
  • Features: References; Tables;
  • Pagination: pp 49-54
  • Monograph Title: Light rail transit: planning and technology
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00301307
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Oct 17 1981 12:00AM