- Simply put, the results of this study suggest that most US transit managers of bus-only transit systems and urban planners interested in transit are focusing on the wrong policy variables for improving transit ridership. More walkable, more mixed use environments are important amenities to encourage more transit use, but the most important consideration is easy access to employment. …
Before we try to change the built environment, we need to make sure transit takes riders where they need to go."
Rather than make huge real estate plays, or go down streets to make local boutique shopping areas.....
People should not have to take over an hour to get to their jobs.
People should not HAVE to work downtown to make public transportation work- single node switching* (as is developing in Denver downtown) reduces public transportation options and increases commute length, expcept to work downtown.
*What is happening too often can be metaphored by requiring all cars that travel across town to have to go through downtown and stop at stop lights while there. After "switching" via the stop lighted downtown streets, then, the cars would access freeways.
The key, based upon superior systems that have been built out, such as in Tokyo, Osaka, Paris, Moscow, Mexico City, Seoul, etc., is to give the public transit rider as many options as possible to get through or around downtown as possible, without having to exit a bus, light rail, commuter rail, monorail, vehicle. Then, if he or she must change with modes or between modes, that change should require no more than a 5 minute walk between these modes and a 15 minute wait.
Until this is done in a new transit build out in the US, no new system will make a signficant impact on the percentages of users that commute to work without using a private car, in the US (barring a severe decline in our standard of living, and, a no other choice option scenario, which I think will happen...........anyway. Then the riders will be truly sullen and angry at having to use very poorly designed transit systems).