Click for next page ( 2


The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement



Below are the first 10 and last 10 pages of uncorrected machine-read text (when available) of this chapter, followed by the top 30 algorithmically extracted key phrases from the chapter as a whole.
Intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text on the opening pages of each chapter. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.

Do not use for reproduction, copying, pasting, or reading; exclusively for search engines.

OCR for page 1
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY When the Interstate Highway Act was passed in 1966, few could envision the dramatic impact that the highway system would have on the economic and social structure of- Americ~n society. Because of the easy access created by highways, many businesses and essential services relo- cated from the inner cities to the outlying suburbs. How- ever, public transportation systems have not kept pace with changing land use patterns and, as a result, many of the transportation disadvantaged now find fewer essen- tial destinations available to them. The lack of personal mobility has economic, social and human costs, such as higher unemployment, reduced tax revenue, greater welfare and medical costs, and limited social potential. This research identified 11 transporta- tion practices that help reduce such costs and provide economic benefits to both the riders and the larger com- munity. ~ NTRODUCTION ttin many metropolitan areas, jobs in the cities are no longer around the corner. Jobs are over the horizon." MarkAlan Hughes Public/Private Ventures The transportation disadvantaged are those people whose range of travel alternatives is limited, especially in the availability of easy-to-use and inexpensive options for trip-making. Factors influencing this immobility are: 1. ACCESS TO AUTOMOBILES In 1990, 9.2% of American households did not have an automobile. Almost half of those without an automo- bile are persons 66 years or older, and ofthese, 81% are women. 2. DEMOGRAPHIC FACTORS: income: Individuals with incomes below $10,000 make about one trip per day less than individuals with incomes over $40,000 per year. disabilities: Non-disabled persons make over 50% more trips than persons with disabilities. gender: 23% of fi~-time working mothers and almost 60% of part-time working mothers have non-traditional work hours. This reduces women's ability to join carpools or find appropriately-scheduled transit options. WHO ARE THE TRANSPORTATION D' SADVANTAG ED? 'The largest groups of the transportation disadvan- taged are those over 65 and those with a physical or mental handicap." Sandra Rosenbloom University of Arizona

OCR for page 1
ethnicity: Nearly 40% of central city African-American households were without access to an automobile, com Dur/ng the past 40 years nearly2 out of 3 new jobs pared to fewer than one out of five white central city have been created in the households. suburbs of metropolitan education: A change in education produces a greater areas: "If you cannot afford overall effect on higher trip rates than a change in a car, you can't get to work." Income, with the more educated taking more trips. Director of an economic deve/opmentprogramin 3. AVAILABILITY OF PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION the Kentucky Highlands. Almost four in ten American households do not have public transportation available within two miles. VEHICLE OWNERSHIP AND POVERTY LEVELS (PERSONS 16 AND OLDER) | HOUSEHOLD VEHICLE OWNERSHIP ONE OR MORE VEHICLES NO VEHICLES Below Poverty | 76. 1% ~23.9% Near Poverty 8 1. 1 % 1 8.9% Above Poverty 97.6% 2.4Yo BARRIERS TO It is widely believed that persons who are poor, disabled, MOBILITY or elderly cannot participate fully in society without an automobile or high quality, low-cost public transportation. Some of the major reasons for these barriers to full par ticipation are: Lack of access to job opportunities for inner-city resi dents; . Need to improve basic services in the inner city to reduce travel needs; . Deficient rural and small town transit services; . Inadequate funding to improve mobility for the trans portation disadvantaged; and . Need for improved public safety to reduce fear of travel by public transit. 2

OCR for page 1
This research focused on transportation practices that have successfully addressed immobility, particularly those designed for better access to health care and to jobs. Six regions of the country were chosen for in-depth case stud- ies, highlighted in the accompanying sidebars. Rider surveys and documentation from the case study sites form the basis of a guide for economic analysis of the practices. The filet research document contains an additional 63 practices, which are summarized in a compendium of operational and community development strategies. The eight key findings below are the result of this extensive look at personal immobility. 1. RETAINING BASIC PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION SERVICES IS CRITICAL TO IMPROVING THE MOBILITY OF THE TRANSPORTATION DISADVANTAGED. In these days of declining fiends, it is important to recog- nize the fundamental premise of availability which under- pins this research; therefore, the first and most obvious finding of this research is that public transportation must be available if it is to be used to address immobility. A case study of the AC Transit District in Oakland, Califor- n~a concluded that urban bus service can be enormously productive economically, and its curtailment, even in low- patronage, off-peak hours, can create added travel costs and income losses for riders that exceed by many times the dollar savings to transit agencies from service reduc- tions. Although AC Transit was able to balance its budget by service reductions which saved $4.8 million, the eco- nomic impact on riders was $48.1 million in lost income and added travel time and expenses. 2. PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION PRACTICES DIRECTED AT REDUCING PERSONAL IMMOBILITY ARE ECONOMICALLY BENEFICIAL. The full research document contains a Guide for Economic Analysis which describes the five steps recommended to perform an economic analysis of transit projects. This analysis can be used to determine the economic value of a proposed project that addresses immobility. The economic KEY RESEARCH FINDINGS Public comments on AC Transit's weekend cuts: "No more Sunday concerts." "Could not visit friend in hospital..." "Zero night life!" "San Francisco is out for recreation." "Trapped at home."

OCR for page 1
analysis can be used by policy makers in making informed transit investment decisions by comparing the transit benefits and costs of a specific proposed project. For pro- posed projects where quantified benefits clearly outweigh the costs, the economic analysis can be utilized to build support for budgets that provide sufficient public transpor- tation funding. The following figure illustrates the five recommended steps for economic analysis. In step 3, mobility benefits refer to benefits from transit trips that would not be made without the availability of transit. Efficiency benefits in step 4, result from the shift oftrips from automobiles to transit, which typically improves the efficiency, safety, and envi- ronmental performance of the highway transportation system. RECOMMENDED STEPS FOR ECONOMIC ANALYSIS Step ~ DESCRIBE PROJECT CHARACTERISTICS AND COSTS Step 2 SELECT ECONOMIC FEATURES, UPDATE UNIT COSTS 1 ~ Step 3 DETERMINE PROJECT PATRONAGE, IDENTIFY MOBILITY BENEFITS Step 4 ESTIMATE EFFICIENCY BENEFITS OF PROJECT Step 5 CALCULATE AND INTERPRET ECONOMIC INDICES The table below depicts results of the economic analysis developed for six of the practices studied in this research. The high ratio of benefits to costs supports this finding that practices directed at reducing personal mobility are economically beneficial. The analysis further demon- strates that the economic productivity of public transit is not very dependent on the income levels served and could greatly benefit the economy by further appropriate expan - slon in ow Income areas.

OCR for page 1
THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS - Annual Annual Benefits Costs Case Study PDRTA' Myrtle Beach SEPTA Horsham Breeze MDTAMetropass MTA Immediate Needs OATS, Missouri Fremont travel training AC Transit service cuts a $2,177 1,563 7,619 13,951 13,939 52 4,759 b $79 213 1,580 5,400 6,010 27 48,100 Society benefits when individuals can access more parts of society. The programs in these case studies also save society money in ways that are not easily quantified by helping to: : avoic] medical institutionalization of the indigent; : prevent crime by providing job training for employ- ment and food for the hungry; : reduce the demand on more expensive and oversub- scribed paratransit services; : provide an option to a costly ambulance ride for medical care; : increase the purchasing power enjoyed by transit riders with access to jobs or to broader market choices; and : relieve other agencies funded by tax dollars of trans- portation responsibilities and, thereby, increase their productivity If transit agencies could incorporate these benefits into new matrices for evaluation, transit's true value to society would be startlingly apparent. Benefit/Cost Ratio (a/b) c 27.4 7.3 4.8 2.6 2.3 1.9 0.1 Net Annual Benefits (a-b) c $2,098 1,350 6,039 8,551 7,929 25 (43,341) TRANSIT CREATES ACCESS TO JOBS Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority* Horsham Breeze Shuttle meets buses from downtown Philadel- phia to connect to suburban employment centers with major employers, such as UPS and Prudential. Extended hours of service are paid for by employ- ers and the county pays for midday service.

OCR for page 1
3. PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION AGENCIES THAT ARE ABLE TO DEVELOP NEW ALLIANCES WITH NONTRADITIONAL PARTNERS WILL HAVE THE BEST RESULTS WITH TRANSPORTATION PRACTICES ADDRESSING WELFARE-TO-WORK, EMPLOYMENT AND HEALTH CARE. 600 PARTNERS PROVIDE ACCESS TO IMMEDIATE NEEDS The Metropolitan Trans- portation Authority underwrites both taxi vouchers and bus tokens, which are used by clients of 600 social service agencies in Los Angeles. Clients in the Immediate Needs Transpor- tation Program use the assistance for trips to food banks and grocery stores, medical appointments, job training and job interviews, and for emergencies. It: I.,. ..1 COORDINATION IS CREATING MORE WITH LESS The Chesterfield County Coordinating Council in South Carolina is increasing mobility for rural residents by layering a fixed-route system on dial-a-ride routes and allowing adults to ride school buses. The 43 member agencies have also agreed to share their vehicles. The transit industry has been in partnership with state and federal governments over the years to fund transpor- tation services. However, almost all the operations spot- lighted in the case studies were new services developed with nontraditional partners, such as: social service agencies community-based~ organizations . volunteer groups businesses, and local governments. Dramatic changes are occurring in the delivery of health care and reform of the welfare system that directly impact transit properties. These case studies identif y transit operators that are ahead of the curve in meeting these societal and political shims in priorities. By designing services in conjunction with their nontraditional partners, they have been able to respond effectively to these exter- nal influences and meet the needs of the transportation disadvantaged. Important elements of agreements with nontraditional partners are: . a vested interest shared by all parties; a willingness to share control; . a climate of trust; . consensus on a common agenda; an ability to listen to the partner's needs and respond flexibly; and an action orientation with scheduled, short-term results. 4. OPPORTUNITIES EXIST FOR BLENDING A WIDE ARRAY OF DIFFERENT HUMAN AND MONETARY RESOURCES TO ADDRESS IMMOBILITY. This finding is a byproduct of the partnerships discussed above. These partnerships have expanded transit's re- sources by providing new funding sources or alternative

OCR for page 1
methods of acimin~stering services. The result has been additional services that increase mobility for the transpor- tation disadvantaged. Collectively, the case study sites have tapped funds from: medical centers and HMOs dialysis clinics retirement housing . . universities chambers of commerce businesses and employers . . alr 1nes . . ~ socla1 service agencies school districts rider voluntary contributions group travel local cash contributions loans and lines of credit foundation grants Amtrak cities' and counties' general funds cities' federal Community Development block grants county congestion management agencies city bond measures city redevelopment funds cities' federal Enterprise Community funds state Medicaid transportation funds state Departments of Mental Health state Elderly and Handicapped Transportation Assistance Programs state Departments of Social Services U.S. Area Agency on Aging U.S. Dept. of Transportation U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development U.S. Environmental Protection Agency U.S. Dept. of Commerce Coordinating with others is another way to blend resources in ways that may not require new finding. By sharing resources, agencies can better use existing capacity of vehicles; reduce liabilities; increase available expertise; create staffing pools; and eliminate redundancy, thereby, freeing up fiends. 5. PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION PRACTICES BUNDLED WITH OTHER SUPPORT SERVICES MOST EFFECTIVELY ADDRESS IMMOBILITY ISSUES RELATED TO WELFARE-TO-WORK, EMPLOYMENT, AND HEALTH CARE. Immobility is an indicator of other social issues that typically cannot be addressed by transportation alone. Although transportation is an essential component in solving immobililv. it will not resolve the problem in and a, of itself, because the origins of immobility are entangled in demographic, geographic and cultural causes as well. Some programs are now being designed through colIabora- tive planning with job training and placement organiza- tions, transportation providers, comm~,nity-based organi- zations, human services agencies, and regional planning institutions. These programs include help for inner-city residents in locating job openings, particularly in the suburbs; commute routes targeted to connect inner-city RIDERS INCREASE MOBILITY S THROUGH PEER TRAINING ....... AC Transit District and the Bay Area Rapid Transit District funded group travel training with peers as assis- tants. Conducted by the City of Fremont, California, the travel training empowered persons who are elderly or with disabilities to shift from paratransit to fixed routes for some of their trips, saving both the transit agencies and riders money.

OCR for page 1
PEOPLE WORK DAY AND N IGHT SHOULDN T TRANSIT? Pee Dee Regional Transpor- tation Authority runs a 24- hour commute service Icing residents in rural South Carolina with entry-level jobs in the tourist industry at Myrtle Beach. Service operates to meet day and night shifts and is coordinated with the Marion County Department of Social Services. TRANSIT + ENTREPRENEUR= MORE MOBILITY The Metropolitan Trans- portation Authority's buses bring customers to the Numero Uno supermarket in South Central Los Angeles, where they can shop and return home with their groceries on free shuttles operated by the market. This entrepreneurial service complements the public transit system and boosts sales at the market. residents to previously inaccessible employment locations; and support services to mitigate demands created by a commute to distant job locations, including extended child- care arrangements, a guaranteed ride home in an emer- gency, and conflict resolution with co-workers. Transit stabs need a new set of skills and knowledge to integrate socio-economic factors into their service planning and deliverer. By bundling transportation solutions with packages of support services, public transportation provid- ers will attack the problem more comprehensively, with a higher likelihood of success. 6. PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION AGENCIES CAN PROVIDE LEADERSHIP IN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, THEREBY REDUCING THE COSTS OF IMMOBILITY. The suburbanization of jobs has followed the suburbanization of residences. As of 1990, the suburbs account for 60% of the metropolitan work force. Today, just one-quarter of the American people live in central cities, and the largest proportion of people half the popu- lation live, work, and shop in urban areas outside the central city. At the same time, poverty and disadvantage are concentrated in the former central cities. Transit agencies have responded with both operational improvements and land-use changes designed to address this jobs~ousing mismatch. Reverse commute routes bring inner-city and rural residents to job-rich areas in the suburbs and in the tourist industry. Auto ownership may become more feasible when these employees have work experience which allows them to advance to higher- paying jobs. Whatever ill effects may occur for transit ridership or road congestion, auto ownership under today's land use patterns will definitely increase the personal mobility ofthese workers. Thus, the reverse commutes will have given these employees an opportunity for entry into the personal mobility enjoyed by most Americans. Two transit agencies spotlighted in these cases studies are involved in long-term land use changes that can have a more permanent impact on economic development. They are developing services and activity centers around a transit hub, positioning transit as part of a larger economic

OCR for page 1
development strategy. However, although transit can have an important role in economic development, it cannot substitute for sound land use decisions. 7. TODAY S MOBILITY ISSUES, PARTICULARLY IN ACCESS TO JOBS, DEMAND REGIONAL APPROACHES. Another outgrowth of the jobs/housing mismatch dis- cussed above is the need for transit agencies to enlarge the sphere of influence used in their planning, perhaps even beyond their own service areas Countv lines and e, e ~ ~ ~ transit service area nounctar~es are artificial barriers for people who need to cross them to get to the jobs and ser- vices they need. Oftentimes, a regional approach is part of a larger corpo- rate strategy of mobility management. The definition of mobility management is "an institutional state of mind that emphasizes moving people instead of the mode of transportation." Such tailored approaches are needed for job-access transportation as well as transportation to regional services, such as hospitals and clinics, food banks, and crisis centers. Given the patterns of land use and demography that now exist in the United States, regional approaches are essen- tial to address the economic, social, and human costs of immobility. It will take a great deal of collaboration on the part of governments, businesses, non-profit agencies, churches, metropolitan planning organizations, and other leading institutions to help knit together a plan that addresses immobility across jurisdictional and institu- tional boundaries. S. SIMPLE IDEAS AND PROGRAMS CAN YIELD SIGNIFICANT MOBILITY IMPROVEMENTS. Many ofthe programs studied in this research begin with simple ideas which have yielded significant results: None are elaborate concepts; none required costly capital invest- ments. Including these simple, independent programs into the overall strategy of a company wit} reinforce the mobil- ity management ethos of the organizations. Including them can also be more effective than considering them as TRANSIT VILLAGE BRINGS SERVICES TO THE PEOPLE The Bay Area Rapid Transit District will revitalize a rail station in a low-income neighborhood in Oakland, California. Its partner, the Spanish Speaking Unity Council, will address immobility by creating a Transit Village at the hub, which features a mix of social services, retail, and residential uses. RIDERS BENEFIT AS METROPASS SAVES $$ ..... .. ....... Metro-Dade TransitAgency ~> avoids $10 million annually in paratransit costs through the Metropass program it created in partnership with the Florida Medicare adminis- tration. Medicare recipients pay $1 for an unlimited monthly pass, but give up paratransit, saying Medicare over $500K a month. hi.,

OCR for page 1
adjuncts to the agency's mission, by assuring the programs greater funding security and integration within the orga mza ;lon. CHECKLIST FOR SUCCESSFUL IMPLEMENTATION Exert leadership. Win internal support from the staff and the policy- makers. Adopt a mobility manage- ment mission. Build community support. Public transportation organizations cannot solve the problems of immobility alone. As identified in the findings above, coordination with organizations across other strata of society will be needed to enhance options for personal mobility. The transportation organizations visited in the case studies had certain strategies in common that have led to their success, which can be replicated by others. These strategies can be summarized in the following checklist for success: EXERT LEADERSH/P Leaders experiment; leaders challenge the status quo; leaders inspire others with their vision. Leaders are needed at many levels of society to solve the difficult issues of immobility that have been presented in this research. The collaborative efforts needed to tackle prob- lems of immobility point to a role for social service agen- cies, community-based organizations, local governments, and employers, as well as transportation organizations. Public transit cannot tackle immobility alone. Nonetheless, mobility is the mission of transportation organizations. Transit agencies need to seize the initiative in their realm of expertise to insure the best transportation alternatives are implemented. If transportation organiza- tions do not take on this role, they may be preempted by others with their own agendas. It is proper that transpor- tation organizations be among the first to exert leadership in addressing immobility. Without leadership, the prob- lems of immobility will worsen and transportation organi- zations will have failed in their mission. "An administrator [e//s you WIN INTERNAL SUPPORT FROM STAFF AND POL/CY-MAKERS. whatyou cannot do-what The culture of any organization hoping to solve immobility the rules are. A manager problems must nurture an environment in which the key rewrites the rules to get things done." finilngs can be Implemented. This means encouraging DannyAlvarez, Metro- staffto exercise leadership by taking the initiative and Dade Transit Agency being creative. It means preventing bureaucracy and ~ ~ ~ I ~ - ~ A ~ ~ 1 ~ ~ 1 hlerarchy trom stlillng innovation. A leader' by dehmtlon' needs followers. If the leader fails to build support within the organization' the innovation will languish or even be sabotaged. 10

OCR for page 1
ADOPT A MOB/] /TY MANAGEMENT M/SS/ON. Effective mobility management requires viewing the passenger transportation system as a whole. Mobility management is the opposite of an institutional state of mind that offers a single product with a "one size fits all" approach. Specifically, mobility management is defined as brokering, facilitating, encouraging, coordinating, and managing both nontraditional and traditional services to expand the array of transportation services to diverse consumer groups. This is an inclusionary definition which envisions responsibility from many partners to assist public transportation in accomplishing its mission of mo- bility. BU/' D COMMUNITY SUPPORT. Organizations cannot form nontraditional partnerships (Finding 3), bundle transportation and support services (Finding 5), and plan regionally (Finding 7) in the absence of community support. Building community support takes energy and visibility on the part of transit staff. It means not only attending community meetings but also setting up such meetings. In designing increased access to jobs and health care, it means stepping outside the transporta- tion field and learning other industries' terminology and key players. But the rewards can be a wider constituency of support for transit, an enhanced image of transit, avail- ability of new financing sources and human resources, and, consequently, more participation in society by those now afflicted by immobility. .... TELEVILLAGE IS AVIRTUAL : ... MAIN STREET : The Metropolitan Trans- portation Author7-ty's Blue Line TeleVillage contains a Telework Center, a computer lab with Internet access, a video conference center, and interactive kiosks. Residents and employees in Compton, California can access many services without the need to travel. The TeleVillage will be part of a one-stop training center for welfare recipients. VOLUNTEERS CONTRIBUTE 76K HOURS FOR TRANSIT OATS, INC. blends a wide variety of funding to provide transportation in 87 counties of rural Missouri. Volunteers donate 76,000 hours annually, an equiva- lent of 36 employees, for scheduling and fundraising. ..... - .

OCR for page 1