Bus Transit Oriented Development — strengths and challenges relative to rail


Graham Currie

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

land use - transit oriented development, mode - bus, mode - rail


While rail has been the focus of most planning for Transit Oriented Development (TOD), there has been recent interest in bus-related TOD with an emphasis on new bus rapid transit (BRT) systems in North and South America and Australia. This article takes a critical look at the strengths and challenges of bus-based transit systems compared to rail in relation to TOD. It includes a review of the literature and an assessment of TOD-related developments. The performance of BRT systems in relation to TOD is considered with specific reference to BRT systems in Australia. In addition, TOD related to local suburban bus service is examined. The article describes the general concept of TOD and how this relates to features of transit modes, outlines the literature relevant to bus-based TOD, and identifies the strengths and challenges of bus-based transit systems in relation to TOD. It concludes by summarizing the relative strengths and challenges of BRT and local bus services compared to rail. The findings of the review are used to identify ways in which bus-based TOD might be better planned and implemented.


Permission to publish the abstract given by the Journal of Public Transportation.