Data driven improvements in public transport: the Dutch example

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - europe, technology - automatic vehicle monitoring, planning - service improvement, organisation - competition, operations - reliability, operations - performance


Public transport, AVL data, Service reliability, Monitoring


Due to reduced budgets, higher political expectations and increasing competition between operators, there is growing pressure on public transport companies and authorities to improve their operational efficiency. It is thus of utter importance for them to be able to identify inefficiencies, bottlenecks and potentials in their public transport service. Recorded operational data, which has quickly become more widespread in the last decade, aids greatly in this process and enables operators and authorities to continually improve. In this paper we identify some of the arising possibilities. We first describe the state of publicly available transit data, with an emphasis on the Dutch situation. Next, the value of insights from Automatic Vehicle Location data is demonstrated by examples. Thereafter, a software tool is presented that enables operators and authorities to quickly perform comprehensive operational analyses, and which was able to identify several bottlenecks when applied in practice.


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