Level of service and the transit neighbourhood - Observations from Dublin city and suburbs

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - europe, place - urban, mode - bus, mode - pedestrian, mode - subway/metro, mode - tram/light rail, planning - service level, planning - surveys, planning - service quality, land use - transit oriented development


Level of service, Service area, Catchment area, Public transport, Network analysis, Walkable neighbourhood, Transit neighbourhood


Few studies have looked at the impact Level-of-Service (LOS) might have on the distances people walk to public transport. The relationship, if any, has implications for transit-oriented-development and the viability of different transit modes serving suburban areas. This paper examines pedestrian catchment areas and LOS across a light rail, a metro rail and two bus corridors in Dublin. Public transport users have been surveyed at 17 stops around the city and their trip origin identified. Catchment areas for bus services with high levels of service were found to be comparable and often greater than those for LRT or metro rail. 65% of all bus trip-origins are more than 500 m from stops. A standard distance analysis suggests natural catchment limits of over 1400 m for high quality bus, significantly greater than light rail and metro rail of similar service levels. The shape of transit catchment areas are also distinctive and appear to be most influenced by: network density, stopping patterns, urban gravity and quality of service. While further analysis is recommended, public transport users in Dublin city and suburbs appear more influenced by level-of-service than by modal type when deciding how far they are prepared to walk to public transport.


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


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