Posts tagged as "intercity"

Journal of Public Transportation Special Edition: Rural and Intercity Bus

SURTC director Jill Hough  was guest editor of the latest issue of the Journal of Public Transportation – a special edition focusing on rural and intercity bus. The Journal of Public Transportation is published by the National Center for Transit Research at the University of South Florida. This issue commemorated the 20th National Conference for Rural Public & Intercity Bus Transportation. It also celebrated the partnership between the University of South Florida and North Dakota State University as one of the University Transportation Centers focusing on public transportation in the United States. Included in this edition is an article by SURTC researcher Jeremy Mattson on the use of alternative fuels and hybrid vehicles by small urban and rural transit systems. The articles in this special edition can be viewed at the following link: Journal of Public Transportation – Vol. 15, No. 3 (2012)

New Study to Research Demand for Intercity Transit Services and Optimal Service Levels

SURTC researcher Jeremy Mattson is launching a new study to estimate demand for intercity transit services in rural areas and determine optimal service levels.

The study will examine how gas prices, fare levels, travel speed, and service frequency influence demand for intercity bus and rail and how demand differs based on individual characteristics such as age and income. The study will also estimate how far travelers are willing to drive to a bus or rail station to use those services. The cost and time associated with traveling to and from transit stations will be factored into the study.

Results from the study of mode choice will be used to estimate intercity bus and rail demand along different corridors. The research will be conducted in North Dakota, but the methodologies developed could be applied to other areas. Different scenarios with different travel times, service frequencies, stop locations, fare levels, and gas prices will be considered, as will the impacts of changing demographics.

Optimal service levels will be identified based on cost of providing service, costs associated with automobile travel, ridership levels, number of new trips that are created, and costs associated with impacts on the environment and traveler safety.

For more details, contact Jeremy Mattson at jeremy.w.mattson@ndsu.edu.

Call for Papers: Special Rural and Intercity Bus Edition of the Journal of Public Transportation

Papers offering contributions in the area of rural and intercity bus are being solicited for submission for a special issue of the Journal of Public Transportation, with support from the USF Center for Urban Transportation and NDSU Upper Great Plains Transportation Institute’s (UGPTI) Small Urban & Rural Transit Center (SURTC). This special edition of JPT will be made available at the 20th National Conference on Rural Public and Intercity Bus Transportation in Salt Lake City, Utah, October 14-17, 2012.

The deadline for submission is April 27, 2012. See the Call for Papers for more details.

Presentation Recordings Posted Online

Presentation recordings for three recent SURTC research projects are available online. The recordings summarize the research methods and major findings from each of the studies. These presentations were also given recently at the Transportation Research Board (TRB) Annual Meeting. Click on the links below to view the recordings.

Study on Market Segmentation of Rural Intercity Travelers

A new SURTC report titled "Travel Behavior of the Lone Rangers: An Application of Attitudinal Structural Equation Modeling to Intercity Transportation Market Segmentation" by David Ripplinger, Jeremy Mattson, and Del Peterson is available online.

Knowledge of intercity travel behavior is valuable to transportation policy makers and industry leaders facing long-term strategic decisions.  The attitudes of intercity travelers can be used to estimate changes in mode shares.  They can also be used to develop marketing strategies to increase the market share of non-automobile intercity travel modes by tailoring or expanding existing service as well as to identify market segments that might be attracted to alternative modes with effective promotion and education.

In this study, attitudes toward travel time, flexibility, and privacy were found to have the strongest influence on intercity travel behavior and mode choice. The study identified eight market segments based on attitudes toward these three characteristics, and mode shares for automobile, air, intercity bus, intercity rail, and van service were estimated for each market segment for regional trips by residents in the Upper Midwest.

The analysis found that a decrease in travel time for intercity bus or rail service would result in these modes capturing a much larger market share. Results also showed that those market segments with higher percentages of seniors were most likely to travel by bus, train, or van for intercity trips, and they were less likely to travel by air for the longer trips. The size of these market segments will continue to grow as the population ages.

The full report is available online on the SURTC website. For more information, contact Jeremy Mattson at jeremy.w.mattson@ndsu.edu.

 

SURTC Publishes Report on Rural Intercity Transportation

With higher fuel costs and changing economic conditions, travel behavior and the level and allocation of resources in highways, rail, air, and transit service in rural areas may be changing. The objective of a recently completed SURTC study, titled Assessing Demand for Rural Intercity Transportation in a Changing Environment, was to determine the attitude of would-be passengers in their choice of mode and the factors determining their choice in rural and small urban areas.

A survey was administered to residents of North Dakota and northwest and west central Minnesota that asked respondents to identify their mode of choice in different hypothetical situations where there were five modes available: automobile, air, bus, train, and van. A model was developed and used to estimate the likelihood that an individual would choose a given mode based on the characteristics of the mode, the characteristics of the individual, and the characteristics of the trip. Results show that, to some extent, travelers, especially those of lower income, respond to higher gasoline prices by choosing alternative modes in greater numbers, suggesting rural intercity bus, van, and rail ridership would increase if gasoline prices rose.

Results also show that age, gender, income, transit experience, traveler attitudes, travel time, trip purpose, and party size affect mode choice. More specifically, the study found the following:

  • The odds of choosing air travel decreases for older individuals.
  • Men are more likely than women to choose automobile.
  • People of higher income have a greater odds of choosing automobile than those with lower income.
  • The odds of choosing air travel are greater for business travelers and those traveling alone.
  • Individuals are more likely to choose automobile if they are traveling for personal reasons rather than business.
  • People are more likely to choose alternative modes if they have used them in the past.

Lower income individuals were found to be more sensitive to changes in travel cost, suggesting that much of the demand shift to bus, train, and van under higher gasoline prices would be from those with lower incomes. The effect of fuel price on mode choice for higher income individuals was very small, even with hypothetical $6 gas. While future fuel costs will impact demand for intercity services, changing demographics may also impact demand. Our findings indicate that an aging population is more likely to choose intercity train, van, or bus service rather than air for regional travel.

The study also examined attitudes toward intercity transportation – respondents showed the most interest in timeliness, comfort, cleanliness, and predictability – and how those attitudes influence mode choice.

This study and other recently completed reports are available on the SURTC website in the Research section. Questions related to the research should be directed to Jeremy Mattson, who can be reached by email at jeremy.w.mattson@ndsu.edu.

Transportation Seminar: An Assessment of Demand for Rural Intercity Transportation Services in a Changing Environment

A Transportation Seminar titled “An Assessment of Demand for Rural Intercity Transportation Services in a Changing Environment” will be held Jan. 28, 2010 at 1:00 p.m. in Room 422 of the IACC building on the North Dakota State University campus.

With higher fuel costs and changing demographics and economic conditions, travel behavior, and the level and allocation of resources in highways, rail, air, and transit service in rural areas, may be changing. SURTC researcher Jeremy Mattson will discuss the results of a study that examined the attitudes of would-be passengers in their choice of mode and the factors determining their choice in rural and small urban areas. A stated preference survey was developed and administered to residents of North Dakota and northwest and west central Minnesota, and a logit model was used to estimate the likelihood that an individual would choose a given mode based on the characteristics of the mode, the characteristics of the individual, and the characteristics of the trip. The results can be used to show how demand for different modes will change with changes in demographics and economic conditions.

SURTC is a part of the Upper Great Plains Transportation Institute at North Dakota State University