Rail Transit Operating Cost Guidelines

by Edward E. Gilcrease, Jr., (M.ASCE), Asst. Dir. of Transportation Engrg. and Evaluation; Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, Atlanta, Ga.; formerly, Transportation Engr., Parsons, Brinckerhoff, Quade & Douglas, Atlanta, Ga.,
Manuel Padron, Dir. of Planning; Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, Atlanta, Ga.; formerly, Project Planner, Parsons Brinckerhoff-Tudor-Bechtel, Atlanta, Ga.,
Walter Kudlick, (M.ASCE), Dir. of Transit and Transportation Planning; Parsons, Brinckerhoff, Quade & Douglas, Boston, Mass.,

Serial Information: Transportation Engineering Journal of ASCE, 1975, Vol. 101, Issue 2, Pg. 365-381

Document Type: Journal Paper


Operating costs may be estimated at several levels of detail, ranging from the simple application of unit costs per car-mile or car-hour, to the preparation of a complete manning table and other refinements, depending on the level of accuracy required for the individual application. The need for this type of estimate prompted the development of the set of guidelines that forms the subject of this paper. The so-called yardstick concept that evolves utilizes unit measures of work and cost derived from actual operating systems to estimate generalized manpower requirements and operating costs for planned urban rail systems. Following an analysis of present transit accounting practices, factors affecting operating costs, and the development of the yardstick concept, an estimate prepared for Atlanta with the aid of the guidelines is presented.

Subject Headings: Rail transportation | Urban development | System analysis | Atlanta | Georgia | United States

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