MIT Transit Leaders Meeting

On June 16-17, 2011 the MIT Transit Research Group hosted the 4th annual MIT Transit Leaders Roundtable in Cambridge, MA.
Photo: Mikel Murga, Juan Carlos Muñoz, Rosário Macário, Fred Salvucci, Nigel Wilson, John Atanucci
The Roundtable brought together 29 executive-level managers from ten large-city transit agencies from Europe and North America: Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA/Boston), Massachusetts (State) Department of Transportation, Transport for London, Régie Autonome des Transports Parisiens (RATP/Paris), Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA/New York), Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA/Washington D.C.), TransLink of Vancouver (B.C., Canada), Metro Transit of Minneapolis-St Paul, Utah Transit Authority (UTA/Salt Lake City), and the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA/Providence). Also participating in the meeting were several faculty, staff and graduate students.
The Roundtable was held at MIT and generated many lively and interesting discussions. The program was structured using an initial “scene-setting” presentation from an academic or agency perspective followed by short agency state-of-the-practice updates and further open discussions.
The major topics discussed included:
How Can Transit Respond to Higher Demand and More Constrained Resources at the Same Time? Charles Monheim, Chief Operating Officer, New York MTA
Strategies for High Quality Bus/BRT in Major Cities Juan Carlos Muñoz and Nigel Wilson PDF presentation

• What strategies have you used, or do you plan to use, to improve bus service quality in terms of:

– Reserved bus lanes and transit signal priority
– Speedier fare collection
– Increased frequency
– Active headway management (hold or express buses, «leapfrog» operations)
– Timed transfers/network connectivity

• What is the evidence on effectiveness of these strategies?
Innovative Partnering to Increase Ridership and Revenue Fred Salvucci PDF presentation

• Business levy to support transit infrastructure investment: London Crossrail case
• Employer-based monthly transit passes
• PPPs for infrastructure delivery and operation
Emerging IT Strategies George Kocur PDF presentation

• Developing system integration capability versus relying on vendors (make versus buy, in some cases), and how knowledgeable should transit organization be in IT, telecom and other technology areas
• Integration with other municipal IT infrastructure: traffic signal priority, emergency incident management, social service benefit programs, employee IDs (possibly used for payment), road operations (snow removal, etc.), and others
• Open standards/open data. Role of open source and developer community; using performance versus technical interface standards in procurements, others
• Legacy modernization. Shifting resources from legacy maintenance to development of new capabilities and cost reduction.
Advanced Customer Information Strategies John Attanucci PDF presentation

• How are you going about improving customer information (pre-trip and real-time)?
• What is your strategy for maximizing the value of AVL/train tracking data in customer information?
• What is your current and expected future reliance on fixed signs (at stops/stations or in retail activity centers) versus wireless devices?
• Should all real-time operations data be made public, and how do you sort the wheat from the chaff of privately- developed phone apps?
Monitoring and Improving Service Reliability Nigel Wilson and Juan Carlos Muñoz PDF presentation

• How do you measure service reliability?
• What service planning and scheduling strategies (e.g., more layover or recovery time, more or fewer timepoints) are you using to improve service reliability? With what degree of success?
• What operations control and management strategies are you using (dispatch/driver interaction, AVL system displays, or messages to drivers) to improve service reliability? With what degree of success?

¿Comments? ¿Opinions? ¿Similar News? Send them to us!