Modeling Bus Dwell Time with Decision Tree-Based Methods

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - australasia, mode - bus, operations - reliability, planning - service level


bus dwell time (BDT), Multiple linear regression (MLR), decision trees (DTs), modeling, estimation


A large proportion of transit travel time is made up by dwell time for passengers boarding and alighting. More accurate modeling and estimation of bus dwell time (BDT) can enhance the efficiency and reliability of the public transportation system. Multiple linear regression (MLR) has been the most commonly used method in the literature for modeling and estimating BDT. However, the underlying assumptions of the MLR method, such as multicollinearity and normality of random error, cannot always be satisfied for real applications. This study developed and implemented two methods based on decision trees (DTs), namely, classification and regression tree and chi-squared automatic interaction detector, for the first time for BDT modeling and estimation. The models were compared with the traditional MLR model after calibrating and validating the new models against the data collected from four bus stops in Auckland, New Zealand. Various error measurements were used to evaluate the accuracy of the models. The DT-based methods eliminated the limitations of the MLR method and provided reliable and accurate estimation of BDT.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Transportation Research Board, Washington, copyright remains with them.