A priority ranking system may be necessary to ensure that limited resources are applied where they will do the most good or provide the most benefit. When properly applied, light rail systems should rank quite well by any such measure if it is equitably and rationally devised. UMTA has the basic requirements included in their cost-effectiveness index, but they have destroyed its practical and equitable application by using a delta-type figure for the denominator, which gives rise to infinite cost-effectiveness index numbers. This is neither rational nor equitable. If these defects were to be corrected, with passenger-miles applied in the denominator, light rail projects would have a good chance of winning grants because of their potential for relatively low-cost construction, low cost per passenger-mile, and savings in travel time cost. At the same time, light rail projects offer civic values, such as stability; locational advantages; orderly development, assessed value increases for property served; and pollution-free, petroleum-free domestic energy supply. Light rail projects cannot be justified on civic values alone. The prime justification must be the operational and travel time savings that are made possible by reasonable construction costs. (Author)

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    • This paper appeared in Transportation Research Board State-of-the-Art Report 2, Light Rail Transit: System Design for Cost-Effectiveness. Presented at the Conference on Light Rail Transit held May 8-10, 1985, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Distribution, posting, or copying of this PDF is strictly prohibited without written permission of the Transportation Research Board of the National Academy of Sciences. Unless otherwise indicated, all materials in this PDF are copyrighted by the National Academy of Sciences. Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
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  • Publication Date: 1985

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  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: p. 46-51
  • Monograph Title: Light rail transit: system design for cost-effectiveness
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  • Accession Number: 00457385
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 0309039177
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Aug 27 2004 10:01PM