Title

REACHING JOBS IN THE SUBURBS: TRI-RAIL IN SOUTH FLORIDA

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

1998

Subject Area

ridership - commuting, place - cbd, place - low density, mode - bus, mode - rail

Keywords

Work trips, Suburbs, Ridership, Railroad commuter service, Patronage (Transit ridership), Market assessment, Journey to work, Downtowns, Commuter rail, City centers, Central business districts

Abstract

Continued expansion of development into suburban areas has led to increased suburb-to-suburb travel, which has contributed to the relative decline in ridership of commuter rail systems from the suburbs to the central business district (CBD). If commuter rail is to remain a viable element of the urban transportation network, it must serve new markets. The potential of commuter rail to serve suburb-to-suburb markets is examined. The size of the potential market for suburb-to-suburb commuter rail travel is estimated and compared with that of the suburb-to-CBD market. The mean market penetration is compared for suburb-to-suburb and suburb-to-CBD markets to determine whether there is a statistically significant difference between the two markets. The relationship between station-to-station distance and market penetration is tested for both the suburb-to-suburb and suburb-to-CBD markets. The results of this study indicate that the total potential ridership market for suburb-to-suburb home-based work trips is comparable with that for suburb-to-CBD home-based work trips. However, market penetration is greater for suburb-to-CBD trips than for suburb-to-suburb trips. Market penetration is found to increase with distance; however, initial results indicate that other factors affect market penetration more than distance.