Title

HIGH-CAPACITY LIGHT RAIL TRANSIT: BALANCING STATIONSIDE AND RAILSIDE CAPACITIES

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

1998

Subject Area

operations - capacity, operations - traffic, infrastructure - station, mode - rail, mode - tram/light rail

Keywords

Traffic flow, Structural design, Station design, Railroad stations, Railroad facility operations, Rail transit stations, Passenger traffic, Passenger flow, Line capacity, Light rail transit, Capacity, Building design, Bottlenecks, Balancing

Abstract

Many light rail transit (LRT) systems in North America currently serve major activity centers, such as stadiums/arenas, convention centers, university campuses (which typically have stadiums, arenas, and large gathering halls), and large downtowns (which may also function as major activity centers). Major activity centers generate pedestrian and/or passenger surge-type flows that must be accommodated by the LRT stations serving the major activity center, as well as the actual LRT line capacity (in passengers per hour per direction). Passengers must be able to flow through the station, from ticketing to the boarding/alighting platform, efficiently and safely. Bottlenecks to consider on the stationside include ticket vending machines, transport from the ticketing to boarding areas (if any), and the station platform itself. Bottlenecks to consider on the railside include light rail car capacity, LRT signaling systems, LRT right-of-way types, and maximum LRT train lengths. The key to designing LRT for major activity centers is to balance the stationside and railside passenger flows.