Office Development, Rail Transit, and Commuting Choices

Decentralized employment growth has cut into transit ridership across the United States. In California, about 20% of those working in office buildings near rail stations regularly commute by transit, nearly 3 times transit’s modal share among those working away from rail stations. Mode choice models reveal that office workers are most likely to rail-commute if frequent feeder bus services are available, employers help cover the cost of taking transit, and parking is in short supply. However, factors such as trip-chaining and absence of restaurants and retail shops near suburban offices deter transit-commuting. Policymakers can promote transit-commuting to offices near rail stops by flexing parking standards, introducing high-quality feeder buses, and initiating workplace incentives such as deeply discounted transit passes. While housing has generally been the focus of transit-oriented development, unless the workplace end of the commute trip is also convenient to transit, transit will continue to struggle in winning over commuters in an environment of increasingly decentralized employment growth.


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  • Accession Number: 01042214
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI
  • Created Date: Feb 20 2007 8:18PM