Making conventional transport more demand-responsive

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Thematic category of idea: Marketing and mobility management Digital services supporting Public Transport
Transport System: Bus Metro Tram Train Other
What is the aim of the idea?: Increases satisfaction of the users of the public transport Increases satisfaction of the employers of public transport Lowers the cost of public transport
Created: 7 years ago
Created by: Artur Zawadzki (Better Public Transport)

Short Description of the idea (max 50 words)

Unlocking the potential of smart card data by integrating it into on-going transport planning. For passengers: a quicker and better match of transport services to changes in their needs. For transport authorities: enables them to concentrate on evaluating various alternatives instead of data gathering.

Full Description of the idea

The concept of network optimisation (route rearrangement) is well recognised within transport planning, the benefits include higher frequency, reduced travel time, reduced subsidy and reduced ticket prices. Carrying it out on ongoing basis has been difficult so far due to the requirement of having a large amount of up-to-date data on travel patterns across the entire network. This has been traditionally a time and resource consuming process. Using smart cards data would be an innovative solution to address this requirement in a much quicker and effective way. The major challenge comes from the fact that travel patters constantly evolve as the city evolves. As a result, public transport is often slow to respond to changes in demand for urban mobility, especially to medium and small scale developments. For example, a new housing estate or industry may be poorly served based on previously low demand, as a result most of the new, higher demand will be met by car journeys and an improved public transport service is provided only when congestion in the area becomes unbearable. Accelerating this process would be of great benefit to both the local residents and to the city by attracting more passengers to public transport, reducing congestion and emissions. The widespread use of smart cards means that a wealth of data is being captured every day in the normal course of passengers’ journeys. The technology exists to generate automated suggestions about network improvements: route alignment, frequency, vehicle capacity. In particular, regular and frequent reports from this database could show the recent trends in travel patterns like changes in demand for origin - destination pairs so that a direct route can be provided where none exists at present or predicting the instances of overcrowding in order to provide additional vehicle capacity when required.


Dublin, Ireland

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