URBAN DENSITIES FOR PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION

The report develops relationships to show the suitability of different urban density arrangements to eight modes of public transportation: the taxicab, dial-a-bus, local bus, express bus, light rail, light guideway transit, rapid transit and commuter rail. Differences in transit ridership among urban areas are largely explained by areawide density, downtown size measured in nonresidential floorspace and the existence of rail transit. Operating and capital costs of the eight modes are examined. At any particular residential density, the demand level will vary depending on the area's distance from a non-resident concentration, and on the size and character of that concentration. For a minimum cost per passenger, downtowns of about 10, 15, and 35 million square feet of non-residential floorspace provide minimum, intermediate, and frequent service, respectively. Express buses to which passengers walk must be confined to large cities, and can only operate at very low frequencies. Park-and-ride express bus service can provide low and intermediate service frequencies to downtowns in the 20 to 50 million square foot range or larger. Light rail is promising for downtowns in the 35 to 50 million square foot range. The present generation of automated light guideway transit is limited to special applications, not to line haul use with its high peaks. Rapid transit to a downtown of 50 million square feet of total non-residential floor-space appears to be possible, if favorable construction conditions exist. Residential densities as low as 1 to 2 dwellings per acre can support commuter rail if the route connects to a very large downtown.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Tri-State Regional Planning Commission

    100 Church Street
    New York, NY  USA  10007

    Urban Mass Transportation Administration

    400 7th Street, SW
    Washington, DC  USA  20590
  • Authors:
    • Pushkarev, B S
    • Zupan, J M
  • Publication Date: 1976-5

Media Info

  • Pagination: 318 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00143216
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Technical Information Service
  • Report/Paper Numbers: Final Rpt., UMTA-IT-09-0023-76-1
  • Contract Numbers: IT-09-0023/31
  • Files: NTIS, TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Oct 26 1981 12:00AM