Many transit operators employ limited strategies to provide connectivity to transit, like bicycle racks on buses. This project will examine more innovative options, such as: subsidies, hybrid ride sharing business models, flexible routing, smaller transit vehicles, transit-sponsored bike share programs, and social carpooling to meet first and last mile needs and increase mobility for all users, especially underserved and disadvantaged populations. As part of the University of Arizona’s cost share, the technology firm Metropia Inc will provide in-kind contribution from their ongoing Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Mobility-on-Demand (MOD) program funded project that specifically addresses the supplemetnary mobility services for the regional transit services. A large amount of valuable data will be collected througout the two-year research period and this data will be very useful for the testing of the concepts and methods in this proposal.
The research team uses a community based participatory research strategy and other experts to assist in developing and assesssing new performance measures that focus on economic viability, equity, health, and access to opportunity. These innovative performance measures will be used to evaluate the service effectiveness of new strategies, which include those in the aformentined FTA MOD project. By changing the focus of transit service to outcomes, the new performance measures and the resulting strategies may be used to recommend new methods for assessing transit service and systems, which may include revising the current Transit Capacity and Quality of Service Manual. We also expect that this foundational project will lead to additional experimental trials with partner agencies.