The Connection between Investments in Bus Stops, Ridership, and ADA Accessibility

Keith Bartholomew, University of Utah

Co-investigator:

Summary:

Although transit decision-makers and riders generally favor improving bus stops by adding shelters, benches, and similar features, it is unclear the impact such features have on transit demand and there has been little research that measures these impacts. This study examines the link between stop improvements and changes in stop-level boardings on scheduled-service buses and in ADA paratransit demand in the Salt Lake City, UT, metropolitan area between 2014 and 2017. The study also investigates current bus stop improvement practices of leading transit agencies nationwide. The study uses a number of quantitative and qualitative techniques, including propensity score matching, propensity score weighting, focus groups, and structured interviews. The results indicate that the bus stop improvements are associated with significant increases in stop-level boardings and decreases in ADA paratransit demand, and that these phenomena are linked (i.e., that some of the increase in scheduled-service boardings is coming from patrons who are switching from ADA paratransit). Qualitative data confirm the importance of improving bus stop features for riders with mobility-based disabilities and indicate the need for future research to investigate additional access barriers to scheduled-service transit.

Project Details

Project Type:
Research
Project Status:
Completed
End Date:
June 30,2020
UTC Grant Cycle:
NITC 16 Round 2
UTC Funding:
$38,049