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18 A consumer research study was conducted by the Utah 511 than 30 min), or riders traveling to unfamiliar locations, are advisory group and a Bay Area TravInfoŽ focus group to de- most likely to use 511. termine the needs and preferences of transit customers with respect to 511 traveler information. (TravInfo was the San 184.108.40.206 Information Provided by Transit Agencies Francisco Bay Area intermodal traveler information system that preceded the Bay Area 511 system.) Based on the data re- The literature includes the results of a nationwide survey ceived from respondents, it was found that transit information of transit agencies in the United States that identified the can be defined according to the following seven categories (8), types of information agencies provide to their customers. Of which are listed in order of importance: the 30 transit agencies that responded to the survey, most provided at least the following types of information: (11) ˇ Schedules and on-time status, ˇ Transit news/updates, ˇ Operational information (e.g., route detours); ˇ Routes and maps, ˇ Route and schedule information; ˇ Conveniences (such as elevators and bike racks), ˇ Proposed service changes; ˇ Fares, ˇ Public meeting information; ˇ Contact information for transit operators, and ˇ Security; ˇ System regulations. ˇ Safety (e.g., mind the gap); ˇ General information (e.g., how to ride, fare information); Also, it was also found that riders usually need traveler in- and formation when they are making a trip that they normally do ˇ Transit in the community (e.g., transit agency teamed with not make, when there are service disruptions, or when they local business). need to know the real-time status of a transit vehicle. (9) In 2001, another survey was conducted by ITS America to One of the questions asked of the transit agencies inter- determine the information needs of travelers. Among the sur- viewed for this study pertained to the type of information they vey respondents, 20% were transit riders. The survey revealed provide to customers. The results--consistent with the general that the transit customers want to know about service delays, needs and preferences of customers (as detailed in the previous travel time or arrival time estimates, and the level of crowding section on Customer Information Needs and Preferences)-- on transit vehicles. The respondents wanted such information indicate that most transit agency customer information fo- to be in real time and updated every 10 to 15 min. (10) The sur- cuses on trip planning, schedule, fare, and how-to-ride infor- vey also showed that commuters making longer trips (greater mation. Figure 1 summarizes the interview results related to 25 (out of 25 interviewed) Number of Agencies 20 15 10 5 0 e e d le s g us r ns rid un bu in u Fa at ed ok io fo to e st st h th bo nd Sc ow ge e is m a d ug H an -ti re st /s l Lo he ea g ts n W R n ni ai an pl pl om ip C Tr Information Type Figure 1. Transit information disseminated by transit agency call center.