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TRANSIT COOPERATIVE RESEARCH PROGRAM TCRP SYNTHESIS 168 Continuous Dynamic Optimization IMPACTS ON ADA PARATRANSIT SERVICES A Synthesis of Transit Practice Will Rodman Kelly Blume Texas A&M Transportation Institute Dallas, TX Subject Areas Public Transportation â¢ Passenger Transportation Research sponsored by the Federal Transit Administration in cooperation with the American Public Transportation Association 2023
TRANSIT COOPERATIVE RESEARCH PROGRAM TCRPâSYNTHESIS 168 The nationâs growth and the need to meet mobility, environmental, Project J-07, Topic SB-36 and energy objectives place demands on public transit systems. Cur- ISSN 1073-4880 rent systems, some of which are old and in need of upgrading, must ISBN 978-0-309-68776-8 expand service area, increase service frequency, and improve efficiency Â© 2023 by the National Academy of Sciences. National Academies of to serve these demands. Research is necessary to solve operating prob- Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine and the graphical logo are trade- lems, adapt appropriate new technologies from other industries, and marks of the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. introduce innovations into the transit industry. The Transit Coopera- tive Research Program (TCRP) serves as one of the principal means by which the transit industry can develop innovative near-term solutions to meet demands placed on it. COPYRIGHT INFORMATION The need for TCRP was originally identified in TRB Special Report Authors herein are responsible for the authenticity of their materials and for obtaining 213âResearch for Public Transit: New Directions, published in 1987 written permissions from publishers or persons who own the copyright to any previously and based on a study sponsored by the Urban Mass Transportation published or copyrighted material used herein. Administrationânow the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). A Cooperative Research Programs (CRP) grants permission to reproduce material in this report by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), publication for classroom and not-for-profit purposes. Permission is given with the Transportation 2000, also recognized the need for local, problem- understanding that none of the material will be used to imply TRB, AASHTO, APTA, FAA, FHWA, FTA, GHSA, or NHTSA endorsement of a particular product, method, or practice. solving research. TCRP, modeled after the successful National Coop- It is expected that those reproducing the material in this document for educational and erative Highway Research Program (NCHRP), undertakes research not-for-profit uses will give appropriate acknowledgment of the source of any reprinted or and other technical activities in response to the needs of transit ser- reproduced material. For other uses of the material, request permission from CRP. vice providers. The scope of TCRP includes various transit research fields including planning, service configuration, equipment, facilities, Cover photo credit: MET Transit operations, human resources, maintenance, policy, and administrative practices. TCRP was established under FTA sponsorship in July 1992. Pro- NOTICE posed by the U.S. Department of Transportation, TCRP was authorized The report was reviewed by the technical panel and accepted for publication according to as part of the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 procedures established and overseen by the Transportation Research Board and approved (ISTEA). On May 13, 1992, a memorandum agreement outlining TCRP by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. operating procedures was executed by the three cooperating organi- The opinions and conclusions expressed or implied in this report are those of the zations: FTA; the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and researchers who performed the research and are not necessarily those of the Transporta- Medicine, acting through the Transportation Research Board (TRB); tion Research Board; the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; or and APTA. APTA is responsible for forming the independent govern- the program sponsors. ing board, designated as the TCRP Oversight and Project Selection The Transportation Research Board does not develop, issue, or publish standards or speci- (TOPS) Commission. fications. The Transportation Research Board manages applied research projects which Research problem statements for TCRP are solicited periodically but provide the scientific foundation that may be used by Transportation Research Board sponsors, industry associations, or other organizations as the basis for revised practices, may be submitted to TRB by anyone at any time. It is the responsibility procedures, or specifications. of the TOPS Commission to formulate the research program by identi- The Transportation Research Board; the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and fying the highest priority projects. As part of the evaluation, the TOPS Medicine; and the sponsors of the Transit Cooperative Research Program do not endorse Commission defines funding levels and expected products. products or manufacturers. Trade or manufacturersâ names or logos appear herein solely Once selected, each project is assigned to an expert panel appointed because they are considered essential to the object of the report. by TRB. The panels prepare project statements (requests for propos- als), select contractors, and provide technical guidance and counsel throughout the life of the project. The process for developing research problem statements and selecting research agencies has been used by TRB in managing cooperative research programs since 1962. As in other TRB activities, TCRP project panels serve voluntarily without compensation. Because research cannot have the desired effect if products fail to reach the intended audience, special emphasis is placed on disseminat- ing TCRP results to the intended users of the research: transit agen- cies, service providers, and suppliers. TRB provides a series of research reports, syntheses of transit practice, and other supporting material developed by TCRP research. APTA will arrange for workshops, train- Published reports of the ing aids, field visits, and other activities to ensure that results are imple- TRANSIT COOPERATIVE RESEARCH PROGRAM mented by urban and rural transit industry practitioners. are available from TCRP provides a forum where transit agencies can cooperatively address common operational problems. TCRP results support and Transportation Research Board Business Office complement other ongoing transit research and training programs. 500 Fifth Street, NW Washington, DC 20001 and can be ordered through the Internet by going to https://www.mytrb.org/MyTRB/Store/default.aspx Printed in the United States of America
The National Academy of Sciences was established in 1863 by an Act of Congress, signed by President Lincoln, as a private, non- governmental institution to advise the nation on issues related to science and technology. Members are elected by their peers for outstanding contributions to research. Dr. Marcia McNutt is president. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964 under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences to bring the practices of engineering to advising the nation. Members are elected by their peers for extraordinary contributions to engineering. Dr. John L. Anderson is president. The National Academy of Medicine (formerly the Institute of Medicine) was established in 1970 under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences to advise the nation on medical and health issues. Members are elected by their peers for distinguished contributions to medicine and health. Dr. Victor J. Dzau is president. The three Academies work together as the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to provide independent, objective analysis and advice to the nation and conduct other activities to solve complex problems and inform public policy decisions. The National Academies also encourage education and research, recognize outstanding contributions to knowledge, and increase public understanding in matters of science, engineering, and medicine. Learn more about the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine at www.nationalacademies.org. The Transportation Research Board is one of seven major programs of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The mission of the Transportation Research Board is to provide leadership in transportation improvements and innovation through trusted, timely, impartial, and evidence-based information exchange, research, and advice regarding all modes of transportation. The Boardâs varied activities annually engage about 8,000 engineers, scientists, and other transportation researchers and practitioners from the public and private sectors and academia, all of whom contribute their expertise in the public interest. The program is supported by state transportation departments, federal agencies including the component administrations of the U.S. Department of Transportation, and other organizations and individuals interested in the development of transportation. Learn more about the Transportation Research Board at www.TRB.org.
COOPERATIVE RESEARCH PROGRAMS CRP STAFF FOR TCRP SYNTHESIS 168 Christopher J. Hedges, Director, Cooperative Research Programs Waseem Dekelbab, Deputy Director, Cooperative Research Programs Gwen Chisholm Smith, Manager, Transit Cooperative Research Program Mariela Garcia-Colberg, Senior Program Officer Emily Griswold, Program Coordinator Natalie Barnes, Director of Publications Heather DiAngelis, Associate Director of Publications TCRP PROJECT J-07 PANEL Elizabeth Presutti, Des Moines Area Regional Transit Authority (DART), Des Moines, IA (Chair) Jameson Auten, Lane Transit District, Eugene, OR Mallory Avis, Battle Creek Transit, Battle Creek, MI Raymond Chan, Greater Dayton RTA, Dayton, OH Roderick B. Diaz, Southern California Regional Rail Authority, Los Angeles, CA Mark Donaghy, Petersburg, KY Rachel Dungca, Metro Transit, Minneapolis-St. Paul, St. Anthony, MN Christian T. Kent, Christian T. Kent, Transit Management Consulting, LLC, Virginia Beach, VA Beverly Neff, San Diego Metropolitan Transit System, San Diego, CA Edward F. Watt, WattADR, Rockaway Park, NY David C. Wilcock, VHB, Boston, MA Tara Clark, FTA Liaison Arthur L. Guzzetti, APTA Liaison William Terry, National Transit Institute Liaison TOPIC SB-36 PANEL Jameson Auten, Lane Transit District, Eugene, OR Sally Brown, Greater Dayton RTA, Dayton, OH Efon M. Epanty, Prince Georgeâs County Department of Public Works & Transportation, Upper Marlboro, MD Rosemary B. Gerty, Pace Suburban Bus, Berwyn, IL Christian T. Kent, Christian T. Kent, Transit Management Consulting, LLC, Virginia Beach, VA Ryan Larsen, Elk Horn, IA Margaret Schoep, Gold Cold Transit District, Oxnard, CA Patrick Centolanzi, FTA Liaison
ABOUT THE TCRP SYNTHESIS PROGRAM Transit administrators, engineers, and researchers often face problems for which information already exists, either in documented form or as undocumented experience and practice. This infor- mation may be fragmented, scattered, and unevaluated. As a consequence, full knowledge of what has been learned about a problem may not be brought to bear on its solution. Costly research findings may go unused, valuable experience may be overlooked, and due consideration may not be given to recommended practices for solving or alleviating the problem. There is information on nearly every subject of concern to the transit industry. Much of it derives from research or from the work of practitioners faced with problems in their day-to-day work. To provide a systematic means for assembling and evaluating such useful information and to make it available to the entire transit community, the Transit Cooperative Research Program Oversight and Project Selection (TOPS) Committee authorized the Transportation Research Board to undertake a continuing study. This study, TCRP Project J-07, âSynthesis of Information Related to Transit Practices,â searches out and synthesizes useful knowledge from all available sources and prepares concise, documented reports on specific topics. Reports from this endeavor constitute a TCRP report series, Synthesis of Transit Practice. This synthesis series reports on current knowledge and practice, in a compact format, without the detailed directions usually found in handbooks or design manuals. Each report in the series provides a compendium of the best knowledge available on those measures found to be the most successful in resolving specific problems. FOREWORD By Mariela Garcia-Colberg Staff Officer Transportation Research Board The development of continuous dynamic optimization (CDO) as part of paratransit scheduling and dispatching systems stemmed from transit operatorsâ desire to more effectively schedule trips that are left unassigned after the schedulers have left for the day, to address reductions in productivity and on-time performance that occur on the day of service, and to improve the delivery of services to ADA paratransit riders. The objective of this synthesis study is to document the current use of a dynamic optimization function for ADA paratransit where dynamic optimization results in improving the efficiency of the route schedule and the overall productivity of the on-demand service without affecting the customerâs confirmed pickup time window. The study includes a literature review and survey responses on the practices of 11 transit agencies. These 11 transit agencies were also interviewed for the case examples. They provided information on the state of the practice and emphasized their lessons learned and challenges. Will Rodman and his team from Texas A&M Transportation Institute collected and synthesized the information and wrote the report, under the guidance of a panel of experts in the subject area. The members of the topic panel are acknowledged on page iv. This synthesis is an immediately useful docu- ment that records the practices that were acceptable within the limitations of the knowledge available at the time of its preparation. As progress in research and practice continues, new knowledge will be added to that now at hand.
AUTHOR ACKNOWLEDGMENTS This report was prepared by Will Rodman and Kelly Blume of the Texas A&M Transportation Insti- tuteâs Transit Mobility Program. The authors would like to thank the individuals listed in the following table from the 11 transit agencies that responded to and completed the TCRP Project J-07/Topic SB-36 survey, all of whom were also interviewed for the case examples. Transit agency survey respondents and participants in the case examples. Location Agency Respondents/Participants Title Abilene, TX CityLink Bobby Sharpe General Manager Austin, TX Capital Metropolitan Suzie Edrington Senior Director, Demand Transportation Authority Response Billings, MT MET Transit Lindsay Gran Transit Supervisor Bowling Green, KY GO bg Transit Robert Gil Transit Manager Green Bay, WI Green Bay Metro Patty Kiewiz Transit Director Lubbock, TX Citibus Chris Mandrell General Manager Oxnard/Western Gold Coast Transit District Margaret Schoep Paratransit Manager Ventura County, CA Sheboygan, WI Shoreline Metro Derek Muench Director of Transit/Parking St. Petersburg, FL Pinellas Suncoast Transit Bonnie Epstein Director, Mobility Services Authority Summit County, UT High Valley Transit Caroline Rodriguez Executive Director Wenatchee, WA Link Transit Richard DeRock General Manager
CONTENTS 1 Summary 7 Chapter 1â Overview of the Technology 7 Paratransit Scheduling Technology: A History 11 How Scheduling Parameters and Cost Weighting Work 15 How Continuous Dynamic Optimization Works 17 Technologies from Microtransit Vendors 18 Chapter 2â Survey 18 Purpose 18 Methodology 19 Results 33 Chapter 3â Transit Agency Profiles 34 Abilene, TXâCityLink 37 Austin, TXâCapital Metropolitan Transportation Authority 40 Billings, MTâMET Transit 42 Bowling Green, KYâGO bg Transit 45 Green Bay, WIâGreen Bay Metro 47 Lubbock, TXâCitibus 50 Oxnard/Western Ventura County, CAâGold Coast Transit District 53 Sheboygan, WIâShoreline Metro 56 St. Petersburg/Pinellas County, FLâPinellas Suncoast Transit Authority 59 Summit County, UTâHigh Valley Transit 62 Wenatchee, WAâLink Transit 65 Chapter 4â Conclusions and Lessons Learned 65 Considerations About Whether or Not to Obtain/Deploy CDO Technology: Pros and Cons 68 Related Issues in Tailoring, Deploying, and Using CDO 71 Lessons Learned 74 Need for Additional Research 76 References 77 AppendixâSurvey Instrument: TCRP Synthesis Project J-07/ Topic SB-36