Internal Code: IAH148
Planning Transit in Monashville
This assignment aims to give students a practical example upon which to demonstrate understanding of the first 10 topics in this unit. It involves some service planning analysis and reporting of findings for a series of planning tasks for the city of Monashville.
Monashville is a city of some 85,000 residents. Figure 1 shows a map of Monashville including the configuration of its public transport system which is entirely bus based. It is served by 5 bus routes all of which run radially to the CBD using buses with a maximum capacity of 65 persons. The attachments show the timetables for these services which only run on weekdays. Annual boardings per route are indicated in Table 1.
A peak trip matrix which is indicative of general travel patterns on public transport in Monashville is indicated in Figure 2
NOTE: a digital version of the trip matrix is available for download and analysis. Also a digital map of the town is available which can be used to illustrate new route planning examples.
In general buses are quite crowded on routes in Monashville in the peak but are not used much at other times. The CBD interchange (w) is quite congested and the city council would like to close it because of the large number of buses parked on its main street. In general Monashville is highly car oriented and transit has a low mode share of all travel except to the CBD.
PROBLEM 1 : UNDERSTANDING FINANCIAL PERFORMANCE (15%)
The Monashville bus system is costing the transit authority a large sum in annual subsidies. Financial management of the operator is very poor so subsidy levels are not known exactly but are thought to be very high. The authority is keen to find expertise to address their lack of knowledge about costs and revenues. You are the expert hired to find this out. A financial analysis of operating costs and revenues has established that:
1. Unit costs for bus services are:
– Per Peak Bus $21,000 p.a.
– Per Bus Hr $25.00
– Per Bus Kms $0.60
2. Average farebox revenue is $0.50 per boarding.
Task 1. What is the financial performance of the Monashville bus system?
Undertake a financial analysis of the Monashville bus system based on the data provided. Write a short report showing the method including any assumptions you have used to identify operating resources, costs and revenues. Ensure your approach is clearly explained.
PROBLEM 2 : SERVICE RATIONALISATION/DEVELOPMENT CONCEPTS (35%)
The transit authority has received your financial analysis report but would like to know what to do to reduce its subsidies. Government finances are stretched so its central objective is to save money however it does not want to overly disadvantage bus users. If possible savings should not be at the cost of patronage. The authority is also interested in any service development ideas you may have however its central focus is cost effectiveness so these must not be too expensive.
Task 2. Identify and assess options to improve financial performance or to develop the Monashville bus system
Undertake a service performance analysis using the data provided to identify options which might save money or (cost effectively) develop service but which would not overly impact bus patronage. Evaluate how these options might affect financial performance and patronage. Write a short report detailing your recommendations and clearly indicate the basis for any assumptions, illustrate the key elements of the analysis and how they are calculated to
show how your conclusions on patronage and financial impacts were reached.
PROBLEM 3 : SERVICE EXPANSION (50%)
There has been a change of Government in Monashville. The new Government were elected on a ‘pro-transit’ policy and have promised to inject $Aust 150M of capital on a new mass transit system for the city. The transit authority has again hired you to develop a plan based on the Governments policy.
Task 3. Identify and assess options for developing a new Mass Transit System for Monashville
Develop a series of options for implementation of a New Mass Transit System for Monashville. You should identify which corridors are the most promising and scope out the design including the technology to apply, the alignments and locations of stops/stations. You will have to keep within the Governments commitment of $150M of capital for the system. Operating costs should be monitored to ensure no significant ‘blowout’ in recurrent expenditure although some increases in this area will be acceptable. It is unlikely that capital of $150M will provide a system throughout the city. Clearly it is desirable to provide a system for as many residents as possible. However concentrating quality service in higher patronage corridors is also desirable to improve service effectiveness. The unit costs identified in Activity 5.1 can be adopted to cost out any service alternatives. Other typical unit costs for construction can be found in the course notes and readings. Students should be careful to reference the source material for any costing. You should assume that all technologies are technically feasible and ‘buildable’ for the unit costs identified. You will have to identify capital and operating costs of each option and undertake a broad patronage and financial analysis. An economic appraisal of options would be ideal but is not essential.
Write up your analysis in a short report detailing the assumptions used, showing the key analysis formulae and describing the rationale behind the service patterns and technologies you have developed. Your recommendations should be clearly identified and their rationale explained. Any supporting analysis spreadsheets should be shown in attachments.
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