Comparison of Rapid Transit Planning Efforts

by Carl R. West, (M.ASCE), Sr. Transportation Planner; California Dept. of Transportation, San Diego, Calif.,
Wes R. Frysztacki, Jr., (A.M.ASCE), Sr. Transportation Planner; Comprehensive Planning Organization, San Diego, Calif.,

Serial Information: Transportation Engineering Journal of ASCE, 1978, Vol. 104, Issue 5, Pg. 695-712

Document Type: Journal Paper


The recent major rapid transit planning efforts of four medium sized metropolitan regions were reviewed. Comparisons are made of existing characteristics, planning procedures, and the recommended guideway proposals. Major technical considerations that led to the proposals are also reviewed. Existing characteristics are introduced first, including political structure, demographic information, topographic features, existing transportation facilities, and transit usage indicators. Next, each region's varying approach to rapid transit planning is examined. The identification of the priority guideway corridor, the selection of the first segment for implementation, and the evaluation of technologies are all reviewed for each area. Recommended proposals are described that emphasize facility type, patronage, and cost estimates. To enhance the understanding of these programs, major technical considerations are highlighted. These include unique aspects of transit ridership forecasts, benefit-cost estimates, existing transportation system analysis procedures, and citizen participation programs.

Subject Headings: Comparative studies | Rapid transit systems | Guideways | Existing buildings | System analysis | Urban areas | Political factors | Topography

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