Public transport planning adaption under the COVID-19 pandemic crisis: literature review of research needs and directions

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

literature review - literature review, operations - capacity


COVID-19, social distancing, ridership, public transport planning, capacity management


The COVID-19 pandemic crisis has greatly impacted public transport ridership and service provision across the world. As many countries start to navigate their return to normality, new public transport planning requirements are devised. These measures imply a major reduction in service capacity compared to the pre-COVID-19 era. At the time of writing, there is a severe lack of knowledge regarding the potential impact of the pandemic on public transport operations and models that can support the service planning given these new challenges. In this literature review, we systematically review and synthesise the literature on the impacts of COVID on public transport to identify the need to adjust planning measures, and, on the other hand, the existing methods for public transport planning at the strategic, tactical and operational level. We identify intervention measures that can support public transport service providers in planning their services in the post-shutdown phase and their respective modelling development requirements. This can support the transition from the initial ad-hoc planning practices to a more evidence-based decision making.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Taylor&Francis, copyright remains with them.