In the midst of nationwide transit service cuts, more than one million rural households do not have a car

Many transit agencies have been forced to drastically scale back services due to rapidly declining revenues, and rural providers are no exception. Many were already operating on incredibly tight budgets, serving large geographic areas with a small staff of part-time drivers. While it is easy to see how pandemic-related service cuts will impact people in urban areas who rely on transit, the impacts will likely be just as devastating for many rural communities, especially the pockets of rural America with disproportionately low car ownership.

Voters across the political spectrum want better transportation options and improved transit

Polling data collected in November and released in March show voters want better transportation options across geographic and party lines. The results indicate that a majority of voters wish they had alternatives to driving, support improving public transit, and want government to fix existing roads before building new ones. While COVID-19 has upended daily life, the results help paint a picture of the transportation system Americans want to see.

Neighborhood perspectives on gentrification around light rail in Denver

Recent research in Denver aimed to provide a more nuanced answer to the question of how light rail and transit-oriented development have contributed to gentrification. Researchers found that residents generally feel positively about changes to the area around the station studied, with age and tenure in the neighborhood correlated to how they feel about the changes. The most common theme in participants’ verbatim responses was improved “accessibility.”

Bicycle commuters experience joy, but motorists would rather teleport

Not everyone hates their commute, according to recent research. While drivers and transit riders would prefer to teleport to work if they had the option, the majority of cyclists and pedestrians surveyed would keep their current commute. The researchers noted that “people seem to value the exercise they get from using active transportation modes for their commutes,” adding that cyclists and pedestrians also report higher levels of mental health associated with their commutes. Pedestrian and cyclist commuters also had more positive responses to questions about confidence, and freedom, independence, and control.

Findings from Toronto: Sticks and carrots for TNCs

We have a lot of evidence that venture capital-subsidized transportation network companies are cannibalizing transit and driving up VMT. Now a new study of this phenomenon examines the patterns of TNC trip making and suggests a system of taxes and subsidies in response. The paper, which employs data from a 2016 personal transportation survey, finds that TNC trips that could reasonably be taken on transit tend to occur during peak hours and for non-work trip purposes. Given policy concerns for maintaining transit ridership and reducing auto congestion and emissions, the authors suggest penalizing these TNC trips with higher fees.

Exploring the relationship between transit supply and parking demand

In a recent study, researchers from Australia look closely at the relationship between parking demand and proximity and quality of service supply of public transit. When other socioeconomic factors were considered, the quality of transit service became much more important than proximity alone in determining parking demand. This will be helpful in the ongoing discussion about where and how to reduce or eliminate required parking as part of development.

On-demand transportation services as a complement of public transit

A recent article reports that on-demand transportation can complement existing transit and help cities reduce traffic by up to 15 to 30 percent. Emerging transportation technologies such as TNCs and on-demand transit apps have been much in the news, often with claims that TNCs are adding to urban congestion. In this study, an important conclusion is that the on-demand service can complement public transit networks.