Cities21 Library

 

Reduce Bay Area Commuting 25%. For Joint Venture Silicon Valley, City/County Association of Governments of San Mateo County, and Contra Costa Transportation Authority. April 2016.

“Fair Value Commuting” is a comprehensive, five-part solution to reduce SOV commuting from 75% to 50%: 1) enterprise commute trip reduction (ECTR) software, 2) mobility aggregation (MobAg) app, 3) “Stanford-style” revenue neutral workplace parking feebate, 4) fill commute “gaps” with better options, 5) reduce systemic obstacles to seamless mobility. CONTENTS: a) 11 commute mode shift benefits, b) sparse evidence for commute reduction in auto-centered locations, c) “perfect storm” of state, regional and local policy demands 17% per-capita driving reduction, d) ideal ECTR + MobAg feature set, e) “gap-filling” includes e-bike/scooter, first/last mile, peer-to-peer instant carpooling, and bike stress reduction, f) autonomous vehicles increase driving and traffic, g) eight congestion pricing policies ranked on political viability and social equity, h) travel elasticity evidence reveals feebate efficacy, i) legislative path including a state bill, j) compelling business model and six-way win for key stakeholders.

 

Full report: 20MB, 177 pages: http://bit.ly/1QBMYnw

PRT4UT - PRT for University of Texas. Feasibility Study. January 2011.

CONTENTS: PRT transit route (alignment) alternatives, trip time comparison, and expansion alternatives. Current travel conditions and peak quarter hour analysis. PRT main guideway capacity, station capacity, and operational analysis. System simulation and sizing with peak quarter hour and special events analysis. PRT guideway, station, vehicles, and maintenance facility infrastructure. 30-year business model with system costing, annual O&M budget, annual revenue sources, and P3 debt/equity structure. Construction responsibilities. Visual impact mitigation. System operation and station interface description. Safety regulation.

 

Full report: 43MB, 118 Pages. PDF: http://bit.ly/26HEwKz

EPA Transforming Office Parks into Transit Villages Study. Final Report. September, 2009.

Study of Hacienda Business Park in Pleasanton. CONTENTS: GIS journey to work analysis. Smartphone instant ridesharing system design. PRT system alignment. TDM design: Parking charges + commute incentives. Overcoming the Tragedy of the Commons via Persuasive, Educational Surveys. Traffic Reducing Housing Preference. Residential TDM based on behavior change and positive peer pressure: Low Miles Community concept. Design for real-time office park car counts and smart parking. On-site and web-based employee surveys – predicted SOV mode shift from 69% to 42%. GIS Bay Area Office Park catalog: commuting patterns of 17 major suburban job centers encompassing 594,000 jobs. Proposal and design of Bay Area MTC’s $33M Climate Innovations Grant Program.

 

Full report: http://www.cities21.org/cms/Cities21_EPA_final_report.pdf

$2 Daily Workplace Parking Charge + $4 Cashout. Presented to TRB Transportation Demand Management Committee, Jan 14, 2009.

ABSTRACT: This complicated driving reduction pricing proposal offers large VMT reduction and is less draconian than other measures that are currently being promoted. If business/voters reject the current batch of conceptually simpler pricing proposals: carbon tax, cap and trade, congestion pricing, large gas tax increase, and substantial parking charges, then this policy may arise as a more palatable alternative.

 

Past efforts to convert free workplace parking to charged or cashout have not flourished. This new scheme begins with $0.25/day charge and $1/day cashout. Charges/cashout increase over time to $2/$4 as other companies adopt the scheme, addressing the previous recruiting/retention objection. Trust-based, self-reporting enables very low-cost implementation, addressing the previous cost objection. The scheme is marketed to workers as a climate-protecting measure. Potential U.S. commute VMT savings is 23%, reducing 51.7M tons CO2/year. Compared to past efforts, this scheme uses a) collective, phased action to overcome the Tragedy of the Commons, b) simultaneous charge and cashout, c) trust-based reporting, and d) monetization of saved parking spaces. A company that voluntarily implements this scheme risks productivity-reducing internal employee strife between climate protectors and climate skeptics. To address this objection, a "good cop, bad cop" strategy is proposed. A state threatens a more draconian policy. In the face of a more draconian solution, stakeholders grudgingly adopt this scheme.

 

This policy research is informed by behavioral psychologists, listserv sounding boards including transp-tdm, and advocacy to nine large Silicon Valley employers. A web-based employee survey was developed to understand qualitative issues associated with the scheme. The survey presented the scheme as a policy debate, with pros and cons, asking respondents for short essay responses. The 55 responses: a) identified special cases in need of clarification and b) provided colorful and useful comments from the extreme ends of the response spectrum.

 

Full paper: http://www.cities21.org/TRB_Paid_Parking2.pdf

Efficient Edge Cities of the Future. Engineers for a Sustainable World Conference, October 2005. Austin and TRB January 2010.

ABSTRACT: A "story-format" roadmap is provided to reduce edge city per-capita energy consumption by 50%. The roadmap provides an integrated vision combining: multimodal transit, ridesharing, demand management, land use, market forces, policy, technology, and paradigm re-thinking. Changing away from an autocentered, petroleum-based lifestyle represents a lifestyle change, but not a sacrifice.

 

Web and GPS cell phones help create a "comprehensive new mobility" system to make green transportation seamless and hassle-free. "Paid smart parking" reduces solo commuting by 25%. "Low Miles residential communities" foster green culture, where residents help each other to reduce carbon dioxide. This green culture is created using the same powerful sociological marketing principles that drive consumer society. Housing preference policies are used to select new residents who will travel less and use green transportation. Two-car families sell one car. As the real-estate gradually changes, asphalt-dominated superblocks are transformed into walkable, New Urbanist locales. Walking, biking, electric scooters, and Personal Rapid Transit enable more than 50% of trips (commute, errands, recreation, etc.) to be made without driving alone. Each of the nation's 200 35,000-employee edge cities can be transformed into huge transit villages of two square miles or more. Through this simple step-by-step plan, you'll save money, shed pounds, meet neighbors, hang out in more lively places, and pay lower taxes.

 

Full paper: http://www.cities21.org/TRB_Efficient_Edge_Cities_4.pdf

SF to Silicon Valley Instant Ridesharing with San Bruno Transfer Hub. TRB January 2010

ABSTRACT: A concept of operations is provided for an innovative instant ridesharing service to exploit the large San Francisco (SF) Bay Area major employer commuter flow from SF to Silicon Valley. While the concept of filling empty seats in cars seems obvious, 15 previous dynamic/instant ridesharing pilots have failed to develop critical mass. The proposed service differs from past attempts as follows: 

  • It targets a large commuter flow vector rather than a two-dimensional area, resulting in a higher probability of ridematches.

  • It uses a mid-commute transfer hub to further increase ridematching probabilities. 

  • It offers a viable business model providing $40 per day per commuter cost savings to Silicon Valley employers.

  • It uses psychological persuasion principles to obtain higher participant commitment.

  • It uses daily financial incentives to motivate participants.

  • Via extensive participant training, it emphasizes immediate high system utilization on the first day of operation.

Full concept paper: http://www.cities21.org/TRB_SFtoSJ_iPooling_with_Hub.pdf (3.5MB)

Major Activity Center PRT Circulator Design: Hacienda Business Park. Transportation Research Record #2006 (TRB 1/07). Published as part of U.S. EPA's “Transforming Office Parks into Transit Villages” study. Co-authors: James Paxson, David Maymudes.

ABSTRACT:The design of a comprehensive mobility system for a suburban San Francisco East Bay Area office park exposes a number of new transit circulator implementation challenges. Original system design perspectives are provided regarding:

  • "Horizontal mixed use" and how resident out-commuters will generate more trips than employee in-commuters. 
  • Line haul transit capacity constraints loom as an obstacle to rapid spread of PRT circulators
  • PRT station placement challenges with office park "superblocks"
  • Design methodology to allocate PRT stations to workers and residents
  • Ideal office park characteristics for PRT alignments
  • Problems with generating too much PRT circulator ridership solved by semi-independent loops
  • Multimodal transit hubs at the edges of the PRT alignment 
  • PRT alignment "style choices"
  • The need for folding grocery carts (and other solutions) when the car is left at home

Full Paper: http://www.cities21.org/TRB_PRT_HBP.pdf - 4.4MB

Bay Area Business Park Catalog. Catalog of commute patterns for 17 major job centers with 594,000 employees.  Published as part of U.S. EPA's “Transforming Office Parks into Transit Villages” study, 1/26/07.

 Catalog: http://www.cities21.org/BABPC/

Paid Automated Smart Parking Design for a Large Office Park. ITS World Congress, 11/8/05. 

ABSTRACT: An original, futuristic, permission-based-access, automated, gated parking system design for a large office park (Palo Alto's Stanford Research Park) is described. The proposed system uses WiFi cellular phones as the primary access technology, license plate recognition via image processing as the secondary technology, keypad entry as the third technology, and verbal interchange as the last resort. The office park encompasses 20,000 employees and has 132 access points to parking lots. The strict access policy creates a high security office park. Implementation cost is estimated at $5.9M. A $0.50 per day parking charge per car is proposed, generating $1.9M per year in offsetting revenue.

Full paper: http://www.cities21.org/ITSWC_SmartParking_071505.pdf

Network Transit for Edina, MN. Association for Commuter Transportation TMA Summit, Minneapolis, 5/16/05.

Full paper: 11MBhttp://www.cities21.org/ACT_TMA_Summit_Cities21.pdf

PRT for Microsoft and Bellevue, Cascadia Center's Breaking Gridlock with Technology Conference, 2/24/05, Seattle. Co-author: Jerry Schneider. 

Full paper: http://www.cities21.org/MS_Bellevue_PRT.pdf

Microsoft 148th Avenue Digital Hitchhiking, Cascadia Center's Breaking Gridlock with Technology Conference, 2/24/05, Seattle.

 

ABSTRACT: Have longer distance Microsoft commuters (4 to 12 mile commutes) traveling in on Bellevue's 148th Avenue pick up shorter distance Microsoft commuters (0 to 4 miles) living close to 148th. Enhance the connection-making with RFID.

Full paper: http://www.cities21.org/CascadiaHitchhikePaper.pdf

Application of New Technology Product Research to New Suburban Commute System Design and Validation, Transportation Research Record #1927 (TRB 1/05), (Silver Bullet methodology paper).

ABSTRACT: To provide improved alternatives to suburban solo commuting, a technologically-intensive door-to-door mobility service was designed for suburban commutes, with special emphasis on addressing attitudinal/psychological barriers. Literature Review, expert opinion, and GIS journey-to-work analysis influenced the initial conceptualization. Concepts were then iteratively refined through interview research. The final system concept was validated via stated preference surveys employing "gap analysis" to measure the importance of barriers and the effectiveness of proposed solutions. An elaborate "assembly-line" eight-step survey protocol was employed, featuring immersive, virtual-reality based respondent stimuli (information acceleration), full disclosure of psychological barriers, and customized door-to-door commute comparisons. Original contributions include: a) a unique combination of varied product research techniques for the design and demand forecasting of futuristic transportation systems and b) rich anecdotal descriptions of technology worker commute psychology.

 

Full paper: http://www.cities21.org/NewTechProdMtkng_TRB_111504.pdf

Morgantown People Mover - Updated Description, TRB 1/05. Co-author: Stan Young. 

ABSTRACT: The Morgantown People Mover is a five-station Automated Group Rapid Transit System (AGRT). This paper reviews history and operating principles, providing an updated description. Compared to previous papers, new contributions include: depiction of complex station design and station operations; GIS alignment map; description of moving point synchronous control; and explanation of three operational modes: demand, schedule, and circulation, with special emphasis on peak period operations. 

 

Full paper: 1.7MB: http://www.cities21.org/morgantown_TRB_111504.pdf

Patent: Method for GPS carpool rendezvous tracking and personal safety verification. United States Patent 7,136,747.Filed Jan, 2005

ABSTRACT: Rendezvous tracking subsystem uses GPS-enabled cell phones communicating with an application server for tracking the whereabouts of carpool participants and for providing on-time status of participants en-route to designated rendezvous points. Safety subsystem can be used to verify safe arrival of participants at carpool destinations. Participants can configure safety subsystem by defining escalation rules and procedures to follow when safety critical events occur.

Full patent: http://www.google.com/patents?id=BHh7AAAAEBAJ&dq=GPS+carpool+rendezvous

Suburban Silver Bullet: PRT Shuttle and Wireless Commute Assistant with Cellular Location Tracking, Transportation Research Record #1872 (TRB 1/04), Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board,  TRB, National Research Council, Washington, DC, Number 1872, December 2004, pp. 62-70.

ABSTRACT: In a hypothetical Year 2008 scenario, a personal rapid transit (PRT) circulator "shuttle" system and comprehensive door to door "new mobility" service transforms Palo Alto's major employment center into a transit village of two square miles, complementing and significantly increasing the attractiveness of commuter rail, carpool, vanpool, bicycle, and bus commutes for the center's 20,000 employees. Of utmost importance, PRT provides faster service than driving alone for the "last mile." A Transportation Management Association enables a supportive commuting culture. A larger candidate pool accesses the personal "MatchRide" web-based ridematching service, increasing carpool formation.


Proposed are new applications of cellular location tracking technology and Wi-Fi (802.11) enabled handsets to increase the competitiveness of suburban commute alternatives. Cellular phones evolve to become a commuter's "command center", an integral part of the workday. The following applications are proposed: A) "TrakRide" to improve the reliability of carpool rendezvous and increase courteous, punctual behavior. B) "NextTrain" to improve the reliability of train-shuttle connections. C) "HomeSafe" to verify that carpools amongst strangers operate safely. D) "QuickCar" to provide five-minute access to cars for centralized car sharing and emergency ride home, using "wireless door key." E) "SpyKids" to maintain secure custody of children during unaccompanied shuttle trips. F) "NextSpace" to direct commuters to available parking spaces, with wireless access to automated, shared parking lots. A central database, known as "Big Sister," maintains personal data to support these applications.

 

Full paper: http://www.cities21.org/PRT_Wireless_TRB_111503_web.pdf

Masters Thesis: Sustainable Suburb Silver Bullet: PRT Shuttle + New Mobility Halves Solo Commutes, UC Berkeley Transportation Planning Department, Steve Raney. 9/03. Link.

ABSTRACT: A five-mile, $50M Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) "shuttle" system is proposed for Palo Alto's Stanford Research Park (SRP), complementing and significantly increasing the attractiveness of commuter rail, carpool, vanpool, bicycle, and bus commutes for the center's 20,000 employees. The office park is transformed into a transit village of two square miles. PRT provides non-stop, no-wait, 30 mph service over the commute's "last mile," and services mid-day trips. PRT is an emerging technology under development in Minnesota, Texas, and the United Kingdom. In addition to PRT, a very comprehensive "door to door mobility" service is proposed, supplying both high tech (web/cellular) and "high touch" (personal) solutions to meet SRP employees' complex transportation needs. Dr. Susan Shaheen defines "new mobility" service as "a new transportation approach that focuses on pairing clusters of smart technologies with existing transportation options to create a coordinated, intermodal transportation system that could substitute for the traditional auto."

A complex travel demand analysis was conducted on a sample of suburban employees, of which 89% drive alone. When presented with a hypothetical futuristic commute alternative scenario, where PRT solved the "last mile" problem and new mobility services solved specific objections, drive alone commutes dropped to only 45%. Extrapolating to the entire office park, 6,600 cars per day are removed, freeing 50 acres of parking for reclamation, conservatively worth $150M. Commuters intend to take 1.32 PRT trips per day for a total of 26,000 trips per day for the entire job center. At $0.75 fare, $5M annual fare box revenue is produced. Additional revenue sources and cost savings total $16.9M per year, profitably covering PRT capital, operating, and maintenance costs. The model for Palo Alto plausibly translates to other job-rich major employment centers.

Proposed are new applications of cellular location tracking technology and Wi-Fi (802.11) enabled handsets to increase the competitiveness of suburban commute alternatives. Cellular phones evolve to become a commuter's "command center", an integral part of the workday. The following applications are proposed: A) "TrakRide" to improve the reliability of carpool rendezvous and increase courteous, punctual behavior. B) "NextTrain" to improve the reliability of train-shuttle connections. C) "HomeSafe" to verify that carpools amongst strangers operate safely. D) "QuickCar" to provide five-minute access to cars for centralized car sharing and emergency ride home, using "wireless door key." E) "SpyKids" to maintain secure custody of children during unaccompanied PRT trips. F) "NextSpace" to direct commuters to available parking spaces, with wireless access to automated, shared parking lots. A central database, known as "Big Sister," maintains personal data to support these applications. The "MatchRide" personalized web-based ridematching service reduces carpool formation problems. TrakRide and HomeSafe are patented. 

For Palo Alto, annual vehicle miles traveled (VMT) reductions are 46M miles and 16,000 annual CO2 tons. There are approximately 6M U.S. employees working in the 200 largest office parks. Extrapolating the Palo Alto model to the other major office parks removes 1.98M cars and provides the following annual reductions: 11.B vehicle miles traveled, 424M gallons of gas, 4.2M tons carbon dioxide.

 

Full paper, 188 pages: http://www.cities21.org/_silverBullet.pdf

Table of contents, etc: http://www.cities21.org/silver_bullet.htm

Privacy-Protecting Commute Shed Study. Steve Raney. TRB 1/03,

ABSTRACT A new methodology has been developed for collecting fine-grained employee commute origination data from employers in major employment centers. Many U.S. multinational firms have adopted the European Parliament Privacy Directive 95/46/EC, the strictest privacy law to date. The methodology discussed complies with this Directive. “Fine-grained” is defined as providing sufficient resolution (approximately 1,000 feet) to assist transportation planning of individual bus stops. Directive 95/46/EC provides for “anonymization” of data to where the data subject is no longer identifiable. Individual address data is aggregated to a 1/5 by 1/5 mile grid at the employer site using commercial geographic information systems software. Once the grid data is taken from employer premises, data is combined with those of other employers, providing further anonymization. 8,200 out of approximately 20,000 worker addresses have been collected from the Stanford Research Park employment center in Palo Alto, California using this methodology. While the sprawling spatial distribution of these addresses challenges many Transportation Demand Reduction strategies, planned transit system improvements should result in a significant patronage increase. This methodology could be automated and applied nationally by the U.S. Census Bureau as part of their Transportation Planning Package, creating higher quality transportation data for improved investment decision making, ridesharing, and transit routing.

 

Full paper: http://www.cities21.org/CommuteShed_TRB_111502.pdf

Small-Suburb PRT Ballot Initiatives (Emeryville, CA), Steve Raney. TRB 1/03.

ABSTRACT Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) has been rapidly eliminated in three recent U.S. major investment studies. PRT is burdened by a past history of un-commercialized government demonstration projects. In the current political climate, a more effective approach uses a ballot initiative to advance a planning study in a city with a small voting population, but many potential transit riders. Two victorious Seattle Monorail initiatives provide examples of successful techniques and avoidable perils. An initiative provides a mandate to advance new transit strategies; however, an initiative cannot advance towards victory or successful implementation without the backing of skilled local politician. The initiative serves as an effective tool for political leadership, not as a substitute. An Emeryville (California) initiative, with budget, timeline, and initiative text, is provided as a model for similar initiatives. For Emeryville, a San Francisco suburb with 6,900 residents and a daytime population of 27,700, a $17,000 initiative budget can sway 1,300 votes, affecting 27,700 potential riders. Rather than PRT serving as both trunk and feeder, a smaller feeder-only system is proposed to serve Emeryville’s activity centers while complementing existing transit infrastructure.

 

Full paper: http://www.cities21.org/PRTinitiative_TRB_4web.pdf

2787 Park Boulevard, A 76 Unit Affordable Palo Alto TOD in a Job-Rich Area, Affordable Housing Site Analysis prepared for Palo Alto Housing Corporation. 6/02.

 

Full paper: http://www.cities21.org/2787Park.pdf

 

Papers by other Cities21 members

  • TRB 1/04, Bright Transit Futures: Reflections on Automated People Mover Conference in Singapore, Jeral Poskey.

  • TRB 1/03, TIFs, BIDs, and PRT: Applicability of Tax Increment Financing or Business Improvement Districts to Building Personal Rapid Transit. Jeral Poskey. Link

  • International Conference on Environment and Sustainability 9/01, Building a Case for a New Transportation System, Mary Bell Austin.  Mary Bell's writings on PRT and other green technologies can be found at: http://www.mbaustin.squarespace.com/can-you-really-do-that/2006/3/22/prt-dreams-to-live-by.html

  • TRB 1996, O PRT, PRT! : wherefore art thou, PRT?, Thomas M. Richert.

  • Transportation Research Record #1496, Cost/revenue analysis for Mission Valley transit development, Thomas M. Richert and John Glander. July 1995.

  • Sixth Automated People Movers Conference, 1997, Advanced transit and prosperity, Thomas M. Richert.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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