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Research Reports

Transit System Performance Evaluation Methodology for Washington State


During the past eight years of substantial growth in the transit service throughout Washington State, there have been major improvements in transit effectiveness as measured by increased ridership and breadth of service. However, transit efficiency has declined as measured by a 40% (constant dollar) increase in operating cost per vehicle mile. Increases in costs of service, supplying service in areas of marginal demand, and local policies of maintaining minimum fares have necessitated greater public expenditures.

The purpose of this study was to identify major concepts of transit performance evaluation and suggest procedures and guidelines for local and external evaluation in Washington State. Study objectives were:

  • Identify performance measures.
  • Develop local and external evaluation methods.
  • Develop peer groups.

  • Date Published: December, 1983
  • Publication Number: WA-RD 57.2
  • Last Modified: August 13, 2007
  • Authors: William J. Kelley, Scott Rutherford.
  • Originator: Washington State Transportation Center (TRAC)
  • # of Pages: 18 p., 310 KB (PDF)
  • Subject: Bus transit, Data collection, Economic efficiency, Evaluation, Methodology, Paratransit services, Peer groups, Performance, Population, Ridership, Rural transit, Transit operating agencies, Urban transit.
  • Keywords: Bus transit, performance measures, "peer group" evaluation, performance monitoring, data collection and analysis, efficiency and effectiveness criteria, performance standards, Section 15, Washington (State)
  • Related Publications: Transit System Performance Evaluation Methodology for Washington State: Final Report, (WA-RD 57.1.).

This abstract was last modified April 29, 2008