New research published on what makes excellent Areawide public transit.

We are pleased to announce that MTI has just published our research entitled Characteristics of Effective Metropolitan Areawide Public Transit: A Comparison of European, Canadian, and Australian Case Studies.

Ten metropolitan areas in Europe, Canada and Australia with highly effective regional transit systems were evaluated to identify commonalities that could contribute to their high public transit usage. This research focused on key characteristics from the perspective of the metropolitan area transit as a system, not the individual transit operators. The characteristics investigated fall within three broad categories: 1) the “behind the scenes” or political and institutional characteristics; 2) the customer-apparent transit service features; and 3) funding and willingness to subsidize transit.

Key findings are: 1) All ten case studies had a metropolitan areawide regional transit coordinating (RTC) body, and although the structure and governance varied significantly, they were all effective. 2) RTCs yield benefits in terms of ridership and operating efficiencies that are discernable from the effects of high transit funding and subsidies. 3) All case studies had some degree of fare integration, and most had complete regionwide fare integration. 4) Transit service from a regional perspective was frequent, abundant, and affordable in all cases. The research shows that even in metropolitan areas with multiple players, efficient and high mode-share public transit can be obtained at the regional level by coordination, proper funding and improved organizational structures

The full report is available at