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Personal Mobility


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  • Rural Transit Application Ride Solution and Rural Transportation

    Ride Solution is the Community Transportation Coordinator for Putnam County, Florida and, as such, is responsible for the coordination of all of the tax funded, human service transportation in the county. Putnam County is a rural county of 798 square miles and total population of 70,000, approximately 11,000 of which live in Palatka, the county seat. Ride Solution operates a fleet of 34 vehicles with about half being buses and half being vans. The operation has been successful in interweaving human service transport so as to form a countywide public transit system with published schedules, bus stop signs and shelters. The service operates on one hour headways in Palatka, the largest incorporated area in the county, and on about two hour headways within a 25 mile radius of Palatka. Four hour headways are maintained three days a week on a 55 mile route to Gainesville in the neighboring county of Alachua. Ride Solution provides 120,000 rides per year about 20,000 of which are general public riders who access the system at published stops. A fare of $1.00 provides the public with a one way trip anywhere in the system. Savings to agency participants includes a $300,000 per year or 33% reduction in Medicaid transportation costs since flex routing began on a large scale in 1996.

    Ride Solution

    Presented at the 10th ITS Annual Conference and Exposition, May 1-4, 2000 Boston, MA

  • Real-Time Parking Management Systems For Park-and-Ride Facilities Along Transit Corridors

    The Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) of Chicago is investigating the feasibility of implementing real-time Parking Management Systems (PMS) for transit station applications in northeastern Illinois. This PMS study is part of a larger effort in the Gary-Chicago-Milwaukee (GCM) ITS Corridor toward development of a Regional Multi-Modal Traveler Information System. The work is being performed in close coordination with the three regional transit service boards (Chicago Transit Authority [CTA], Metra commuter rail, Pace suburban bus).

    The PMS study includes an implementation plan that defines initial demonstration project locations, and is establishing both a system architecture and regional standards for design and configuration of real-time parking management components. These standards would assure common types of parking information displays at transit park-and-ride facilities in the Chicago area, regardless of service provider. The uniform standards would facilitate leveraging of capital and maintenance costs between different service boards, thus reducing overall program costs.

    Study activities include:

    • Needs assessment from both operator and user perspectives
    • Review of technologies
    • Functional requirements definition
    • Conceptual definition of PMS operational schemes and display types
    • Implementation plan and identification of demonstration sites
    • Standard specifications for system and displays

    The study is being performed for the RTA by Wilbur Smith Associates, with subconsultants HNTB and TranSmart Technologies.

    Wilbur Smith Associates

    Regional Transportation Authority

    Presented at the 10th ITS Annual Conference and Exposition, May 1-4, 2000 Boston, MA

  • Path-Processing Capability in the Watsim Microsimulation Model

    Dynamic Traffic Assignment (DTA) is perceived as a major ITS initiative to manage congestion. DTA algorithms seek to guide “smart cars” along paths to their respective destinations so as to disperse traffic demand over a network in a manner that minimizes vehicle hours or trip travel times. DTA algorithms must be tested before deployed. This paper describes a microsimulation model designed to interface with any DTA algorithm, which simulates the operational performance of traffic comprised of a mix of “smart” cars equipped to be guided during their travel, and those not so equipped. Results obtained by the model simulation a DTA traffic environment are presented.

    KLD Associates, Inc.

    Presented at the 10th ITS Annual Conference and Exposition, May 1-4, 2000 Boston, MA

  • Minnesota Department of Transportation Motorist Information

    Freeway congestion is an ever-increasing problem. With limited funding, building bigger roads is not always an option. So we look to traffic management strategies in order to optimize traffic flow efficiency and safety. Of those strategies, this paper addresses Motorist Information. The Minnesota Department of Transportation (Mn/DOT) has been on the leading edge with their Motorist Information efforts.

    Within this paper we will provide background information regarding Mn/DOT’s Traffic Management Center. Again, Mn/DOT was on the leading edge when it was opened in 1972. But the truly impressive expansion of the system came during the 1980’s and 1990’s. Our surveillance increased from 32 CCTV cameras to now more then 240. In addition, we have a fully automated system of more then 400 ramp meters, a continually expanding changeable message sign (CMS) system and the previously mentioned Advanced Traveler Information Systems are described.

    This paper will also explain how the low power Highway Advisory Radio (HAR) was initially considered for dissemination of traffic information. But it was determined it would not be as effective as would be needed. So the concept of partnering with the Minneapolis Public Schools (MSP) was presented. There had been nothing like this previously or since. Mn/DOT’s Traffic Radio is the only one of it’s kind in the United States. The partnership includes an amount paid by Mn/DOT to MPS for traffic reports, originating from the Mn/DOT Traffic Management Center, to be broadcast at ten minute intervals from 6:00-9:00 A.M. and 3:30-7:00 P.M., Monday through Friday.

    Once Traffic Radio was established it was decided that we needed to provide more options for motorists to receive our information. The idea was that we would provide the most accurate information to everyone regardless of where they were. So through our own development and partnerships we now have Motorist Information available through the Internet, television and the telephone. This paper will identify and describe each of these strategies. And finally, what the future holds.

    Minnesota Department of Transportation

    Presented at the 10th ITS Annual Conference and Exposition, May 1-4, 2000 Boston, MA

  • Intermodal Applications of Advanced Traveler Information Systems: The Case of Airport Ground Access

    Advanced Traveler Information Systems (ATIS) are currently being deployed in metropolitan areas for both highway and transit systems. Now, traveler information systems are being examined for their applicability to all phases of the longer distance trip between metropolitan areas. Work now underway at the I-95 Corridor Coalition is examining the needs of the traveler for longer distance trips by modes other than the private automobile.1 Work currently underway at the Transit Cooperative Research Program is examining a wide variety of strategies useful to the designer of public transportation services to airports, including the need to get information to the user about alternatives to the automobile trip.2 Based on the work at these two organizations, this paper reviews the application of elements of ATIS programs to aid the traveler in the provision of a multisegment public mode trip (i.e. a trip requiring several modes) which provides the user with an alternative to the automobile trip. The examples illustrate the technology available to improve the utilization of public modes to major airports.

    Matthew A. Coogan - Consultant in Transportation

    Presented at the 10th ITS Annual Conference and Exposition, May 1-4, 2000 Boston, MA

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