A multi-objective metaheuristic approach for the Transit Network Design Problem

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

planning - network design, ridership - commuting


Transit Network Design Problem, Multi-objective combinatorial optimization, GRASP


We study the problem of the optimal design of routes and frequencies in urban public transit systems, the Transit Network Design Problem (TNDP), which is modeled as a multi-objective combinatorial optimization problem. A new heuristic based on the GRASP metaheuristic is proposed to solve the TNDP. As a multi-objective metaheuristic, it produces in a single run a set of non-dominated solutions representing different trade-off levels between the conflicting objectives of users and operators. Previous approaches have dealt with the multi-objective nature of the problem by weighting the different objectives into a single objective function. The case proposed by Mandl is used to show that the multi-objective metaheuristic is capable of producing a diverse set of solutions, which are compared with solutions obtained by other authors. We show that the proposed algorithm produces more non-dominated solutions than the Weighted Sum Method with the same computational effort, using the case of Mandl and another real test case.