First and Last Mile Assessment for Transit Systems

Document Type


Publication Date


Subject Area

place - north america, planning - environmental impact, planning - methods, planning - service improvement, ridership - growth


accessibility, automobile travel, environmental impacts, evaluation and assessment, health, modal shift, public transit, savings


The First Mile Last Mile (FMLM) challenge garners significant attention as a means to assess the accessibility of the first leg to transit and the last leg from public transit. As a critical barrier to public transit accessibility, the challenge provides many opportunities to closely analyze conditions from the level of the transit station upwards to the level of the system-wide network. Its usefulness in contributing to the body of knowledge on barriers to transit access provides planners and researchers important information with implications in increasing ridership, transit efficiency, multimodal travel options, and accessible mobility. In this project, we propose a methodological framework for analyzing the FMLM problems by determining varying causes of poor public transit accessibility and identifying areas with immediate needs for improvements. We showcase the analytical framework using a transit network in the state of Utah operated by the Utah Transit Authority. We also conducted analysis on the impacts of reduced automobile use on personal and environmental health. As a companion product, a spreadsheet-based sketch planning tool is developed to estimate health cost savings as a result of mode shifts from private automobiles to active transportation options.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by the Upper Great Plains Transportation Institute, copyright remains with them.