Evaluation of a light rail transit system involves many considerations that are specific to sites or systems and cannot be treated in a general study. However, it is possible to establish a value for reductions in running time relative to reductions in direct operating cost, savings in passenger time, and increases in net system revenue. These values, which depend on passenger volume, can be related to capital cost improvements. These include eliminating on-street running, eliminating grade crossings, instituting high-platform loading, and varying fare-collection systems. Brief commands are included on other factors of system evaluation including reliability, safety, and provision for future growth. The paper concludes that, although certain intensive improvements are likely to be justifiable, these must depend on a more detailed system-specific evaluation. In general it suggests that the planning and design of light rail transit should keep the system as simple as possible and, on the surface, avoid automatic application of rapid transit or railroad standards-and costs.

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  • Supplemental Notes:
    • This article is extracted from Light Rail Transit, Proceedings of a National Conference conducted by TRB and Sponsored by UMTA, Am Public Transit Assoc and U Penn, 23-25 June 1975. Payment in advance is requested. For handling charges add 5% for domestic and 10% for foreign orders. 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
  • Corporate Authors:

    Transportation Research Board (TRB)

    Washington, DC   
  • Authors:
    • Parkinson, Tom E
  • Conference:
  • Publication Date: 1975

Media Info

  • Media Type: Print
  • Features: Tables;
  • Pagination: pp 159-166
  • Monograph Title: Light rail transit
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00129822
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Apr 21 1981 12:00AM