Evaluating the impacts and benefits of public transport design and operational measures

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

economics - operating costs, economics - fare revenue, economics - benefits, operations - crowding, operations - performance, operations - scheduling, operations - reliability, mode - bus, planning - service level, place - europe, place - urban, ridership - perceptions


Design and Operational Measures, Service Reliability, Empirical Evaluation, Bus with High Level of Service


Design and operational measures are designed and implemented to improve public transport performance and level-of-service. In the case of urban bus systems, priority, operational and control measures are aimed to elevate bus services to buses with high level of service (BHLS). Even though there is an explosive growth in design and operational measures implementation and growing research interest in investigating their impact on performance indicators, there is lack of a systematic evaluation of their benefits. We present an evaluation framework and a detail sequence of steps for quantifying the impacts of public transport design and operational measures. The effects of service performance on travel times and costs are assessed by accounting for relations between reliability and waiting times, crowding and perceived travel times, and vehicle scheduling and operational costs. The evaluation integrates the implications of reliability on generalized passenger travel costs and operational costs. We deploy the proposed evaluation framework to a field experiment in Stockholm where a series of measures were implemented on the busiest bus line. The results suggest that the total passenger and operator benefits amount to 36.8 million Swedish crowns on an annual basis. The overall assessment of the impacts of design and operational measures enables the comparison of different implementations, assess their effectiveness, prioritize alternative measures and provide a sound basis for motivating investments.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Elsevier, copyright remains with them.


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