9-line access access management access point accessibility ADA air quality alignment amenity antiplanner atlanta BART BID bike Blogs boston branded bus branded buses brookings brt bus Bus Rapid Transit BYU capacity car pool cars central link Centrality certification commuter rail condo conformity congestion congestion pricing connections consistency coverage crossings CRT cycling DART dedicated dedicated right of way density denver depreciation developers development dynamic pricing economics efficiency Envision Utah equity eugene exclusive extension FAQ favela Federal Funding Flex Bus florida free fare zone freeways Frequent Transit Network frontrunner frontunner Gallivan garden cities gas prices geotagging goat Google grade-separation Granary District growth headway heavy rail hedonic High Speed Rail history housing housing affordability housing bubble housing prices HOV income infill innovative intersections intensity ITS junk science LA land use LEED legacy city light rail linear park location LRT lyft M/ART malls mapping maps market urbanism metrics metro MetroRail missoula mixed mixed traffic mixed-traffic mobile mode choice Mode Share multi-family MXD neighborhood networks news NIMBY office online op-ed open letter Operations parking parking meters peak travel pedestrian environment phasing Photomorphing planning Portland property property values Provo proximity quality_transit rail railvolution rant rapid rapid transit RDA real estate redevelopment reliability research retail Ridership ridesharing right of way roadway network ROW salt lake city san diego schedule schedule span seattle separated shuttle silver line single family SLC SLC transit master plan slums smartphone snow sprawl standing stop spacing streetcar streetscape streetscaping subdivision subsidy Sugarhouse Sugarhouse Streetcar Tacoma taxi technology tenure termini time-separation TOD townhouse traffic signal tram transit transit networks transit oriented development Transit Planning transponder transportation travel time TRAX trip planning trolley tunnel uber university of utah urban design urban economics urban land UTA UTA 2 Go Trip Planner utah Utah County Utah Transit Authority vmt walking distance web welfare transit Westside Connector WFRC wheelchairs zoning

Friday, February 7, 2014

On Free Transit

Talinn, Estonia, has free public transit. 

Two things of note:
a) "passenger demand of just 3 percent — and attributed most of that gain to other factors, such as service improvements and new priority lanes for buses"
b) "if any modal shift is happening, it’s that some people are walking less and riding transit more"
The former suggests that service quality and speed matter more than fares. The latter suggests that they are spacing their bus stops too closely (400m), so that the buses are acting a pedestrian circulator, rather than a pedestrian extender. The latter is the more important point.
For buses, there is increasing marginal cost (of delay) per passenger. Every stop makes the journey longer. The more people on the bus, the greater the cumulative delay. If boarding takes 15 seconds, and there are four passengers on the bus, the result is 60 seconds of person-delay. If there are 8 people, the resulting delay is twice as large.
For a pedestrian facing the choice whether to walk or wait for the bus, the per passenger delay caused by boarding is immaterial. The only time-cost is waiting for the bus. If a bus comes every 5 minutes, it is worth waiting about 3 minutes to catch the bus. A comfortable walking pace is 5 m/s, so for any distance over 180m**, it is worth wait to catch a bus. On which basis, bus stops would be placed every 180m. So every four blocks would add a minute of travel time***, per passenger. Ergo, as headway (buses/hour) rises, distance between stops should rise as well.
* 3 minutes x 60 seconds/minute x 5 meters per second
**About 1 SLC block.
***Four blocks-->four stops x 15s delay/stop
'Best Bus', and the 'Bad Bus'.