ECONOMIES OF SCALE IN PARATRANSIT: SPECIAL SERVICE AGENCIES AND TAXICAB COMPANIES

Transportation planners have become interested in forms of paratransit service that have developed without direct government involvement, namely, special transportation services and taxi services. Both services have the potential of providing a viable, reasonably priced transportation service to the elderly and handicapped population. The purpose of this study was to test whether economies or dis-economies of scale exist in the delivery of special transportation service or taxi service. The study addresses the following questions: 1) do average costs decrease with increases in ridership that are due to increasing the number of riders or special groups served within an area, and 2) do average costs decrease with increases in ridership that are due to increasing the service area. Data was collected from special service agencies and taxicab companies in the Chicago metropolitan area. The samples were subdivided by service characteristics, and average costs were compared. Cost models were developed using regression analysis. For special service agencies, no relation between average financial costs and scale were found. For taxicab companies, there is a "U" shaped curve for increasing ridership of taxicab firms in the U.S. The models were also used to compare the unit costs of special service agencies and taxicab companies under similar operating conditions. The comparison indicated that relatively small increases in the occupancy rate due to operating shared-ride should make the cost per passenger trip for taxicab service lower than that of special services. (UMTA)

  • Corporate Authors:

    University of Illinois, Chicago

    Urban Transportation Center, 412 South Peoria Street, Suite 340
    Chicago, IL  United States  60607

    Urban Mass Transportation Administration

    400 7th Street, SW
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Authors:
    • Robins, L
    • Pagano, A M
    • McKnight, C
  • Publication Date: 1981-5

Media Info

  • Pagination: 90 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00335699
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: UMTA-IL-11-0028-81-2Final Rpt., IL-11-0028
  • Files: TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Oct 28 1981 12:00AM