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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Development of Transactional Data Specifications for Demand-Responsive Transportation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25800.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Development of Transactional Data Specifications for Demand-Responsive Transportation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25800.
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2020 T R A N S I T C O O P E R A T I V E R E S E A R C H P R O G R A M TCRP RESEARCH REPORT 210 Research sponsored by the Federal Transit Administration in cooperation with the Transit Development Corporation Subject Areas Passenger Transportation • Public Transportation Development of Transactional Data Specifications for Demand-Responsive Transportation Roger Teal Niels Larsen David King Candace Brakewood Charlotte Frei a n d David Chia DemanDTrans soluTions, inc. Chicago, IL

TCRP RESEARCH REPORT 210 Project G-16 ISSN 2572-3782 ISBN 978-0-309-48135-9 © 2020 National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. COPYRIGHT INFORMATION Authors herein are responsible for the authenticity of their materials and for obtaining written permissions from publishers or persons who own the copyright to any previously published or copyrighted material used herein. Cooperative Research Programs (CRP) grants permission to reproduce material in this publication for classroom and not-for-profit purposes. Permission is given with the understanding that none of the material will be used to imply TRB, AASHTO, FAA, FHWA, FTA, GHSA, NHTSA, or TDC endorsement of a particular product, method, or practice. It is expected that those reproducing the material in this document for educational and not-for-profit uses will give appropriate acknowledgment of the source of any reprinted or reproduced material. For other uses of the material, request permission from CRP. NOTICE The research report was reviewed by the technical panel and accepted for publication according to procedures established and overseen by the Transportation Research Board and approved by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The opinions and conclusions expressed or implied in this report are those of the researchers who performed the research and are not necessarily those of the Transportation Research Board; the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; or the program sponsors. The Transportation Research Board; the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; and the sponsors of the Transit Cooperative Research Program do not endorse products or manufacturers. Trade or manufacturers’ names appear herein solely because they are considered essential to the object of the report. TRANSIT COOPERATIVE RESEARCH PROGRAM The nation’s growth and the need to meet mobility, environmental, and energy objectives place demands on public transit systems. Cur- rent systems, some of which are old and in need of upgrading, must expand service area, increase service frequency, and improve efficiency to serve these demands. Research is necessary to solve operating prob- lems, adapt appropriate new technologies from other industries, and introduce innovations into the transit industry. The Transit Coopera- tive Research Program (TCRP) serves as one of the principal means by which the transit industry can develop innovative near-term solutions to meet demands placed on it. The need for TCRP was originally identified in TRB Special Report 213—Research for Public Transit: New Directions, published in 1987 and based on a study sponsored by the Urban Mass Transportation Administration—now the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). A report by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), Transportation 2000, also recognized the need for local, problem- solving research. TCRP, modeled after the successful National Coop- erative Highway Research Program (NCHRP), undertakes research and other technical activities in response to the needs of transit ser- vice providers. The scope of TCRP includes various transit research fields including planning, service configuration, equipment, facilities, operations, human resources, maintenance, policy, and administrative practices. TCRP was established under FTA sponsorship in July 1992. Proposed by the U.S. Department of Transportation, TCRP was authorized as part of the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA). On May 13, 1992, a memorandum agreement outlining TCRP operating procedures was executed by the three cooperating organi- zations: FTA; the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, acting through the Transportation Research Board (TRB); and the Transit Development Corporation, Inc. (TDC), a nonprofit educational and research organization established by APTA. TDC is responsible for forming the independent governing board, designated as the TCRP Oversight and Project Selection (TOPS) Commission. Research problem statements for TCRP are solicited periodically but may be submitted to TRB by anyone at any time. It is the responsibility of the TOPS Commission to formulate the research program by identi- fying the highest priority projects. As part of the evaluation, the TOPS Commission defines funding levels and expected products. Once selected, each project is assigned to an expert panel appointed by TRB. The panels prepare project statements (requests for propos- als), select contractors, and provide technical guidance and counsel throughout the life of the project. The process for developing research problem statements and selecting research agencies has been used by TRB in managing cooperative research programs since 1962. As in other TRB activities, TCRP project panels serve voluntarily without compensation. Because research cannot have the desired effect if products fail to reach the intended audience, special emphasis is placed on disseminat- ing TCRP results to the intended users of the research: transit agen- cies, service providers, and suppliers. TRB provides a series of research reports, syntheses of transit practice, and other supporting material developed by TCRP research. APTA will arrange for workshops, train- ing aids, field visits, and other activities to ensure that results are imple- mented by urban and rural transit industry practitioners. TCRP provides a forum where transit agencies can cooperatively address common operational problems. TCRP results support and complement other ongoing transit research and training programs. Published research reports of the TRANSIT COOPERATIVE RESEARCH PROGRAM are available from Transportation Research Board Business Office 500 Fifth Street, NW Washington, DC 20001 and can be ordered through the Internet by going to http://www.national-academies.org and then searching for TRB Printed in the United States of America

The National Academy of Sciences was established in 1863 by an Act of Congress, signed by President Lincoln, as a private, non- governmental institution to advise the nation on issues related to science and technology. Members are elected by their peers for outstanding contributions to research. Dr. Marcia McNutt is president. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964 under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences to bring the practices of engineering to advising the nation. Members are elected by their peers for extraordinary contributions to engineering. Dr. John L. Anderson is president. The National Academy of Medicine (formerly the Institute of Medicine) was established in 1970 under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences to advise the nation on medical and health issues. Members are elected by their peers for distinguished contributions to medicine and health. Dr. Victor J. Dzau is president. The three Academies work together as the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to provide independent, objective analysis and advice to the nation and conduct other activities to solve complex problems and inform public policy decisions. The National Academies also encourage education and research, recognize outstanding contributions to knowledge, and increase public understanding in matters of science, engineering, and medicine. Learn more about the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine at www.national-academies.org. The Transportation Research Board is one of seven major programs of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The mission of the Transportation Research Board is to provide leadership in transportation improvements and innovation through trusted, timely, impartial, and evidence-based information exchange, research, and advice regarding all modes of transportation. The Board’s varied activities annually engage about 8,000 engineers, scientists, and other transportation researchers and practitioners from the public and private sectors and academia, all of whom contribute their expertise in the public interest. The program is supported by state transportation departments, federal agencies including the component administrations of the U.S. Department of Transportation, and other organizations and individuals interested in the development of transportation. Learn more about the Transportation Research Board at www.TRB.org.

C O O P E R A T I V E R E S E A R C H P R O G R A M S CRP STAFF FOR TCRP RESEARCH REPORT 210 Christopher J. Hedges, Director, Cooperative Research Programs Lori L. Sundstrom, Deputy Director, Cooperative Research Programs Gwen Chisholm Smith, Manager, Transit Cooperative Research Program Dianne S. Schwager, Senior Program Officer Jarrel McAfee, Senior Program Assistant Eileen P. Delaney, Director of Publications Natalie Barnes, Associate Director of Publications TCRP PROJECT G-16 PANEL Field of Administration A. Jeff Becker, Regional Transportation District—Denver, Denver, CO (Chair) Nisar U. Ahmed, Metropolitan Transportation Commission, San Francisco, CA Stacey G. Bricka, Bastrop, TX Robert J. Brink, Jr., Kerr Area Rural Transportation Authority, Henderson, NC Gregory L. Newmark, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS Suzanne O’Neill, Transit Plus, Inc., Elizabeth, CO Christopher A. Pangilinan, Uber, New York City, NY Valerie Shultz, Michigan DOT, Lansing, MI Murat Omay, FTA Liaison Jana Lynott, AARP Public Policy Institute Liaison Robin Riesa Phillips, National RTAP Liaison Christopher E. Zeilinger, CTAA Liaison Stephen J. Andrle, TRB Liaison

TCRP Research Report 210: Development of Transactional Data Specifications for Demand- Responsive Transportation presents a transactional data specification for demand-responsive transportation (DRT) to facilitate interactions among the software systems that manage these services. The specification accomplishes two objectives. First, it establishes a common language for software systems to communicate transactional data—all pertinent DRT trip details, such as origin and destination of the traveler and time of the requested pickup or delivery—with each other to accomplish DRT trips from the beginning to the end of the trip lifecycle. Second, it provides a recommended technical approach for how data communication will occur among the interoperating computer systems. Public transporta- tion agencies, DRT service providers, and technology providers can use the products of this report to improve DRT services. Cities, planning agencies, and health-care organizations will benefit from the adoption of transactional data specifications as a means of fostering the cost-effective evolution and growth of DRT services. Currently in the United States, DRT services almost always operate in isolation from other DRT services in their proximity. This precludes the possibility of cross-system inter- actions that could reduce cost per passenger served and improve service quality. Being able to interact can produce benefits—fewer empty seats, lower cost per passenger, less delay for customers—to both passengers and transportation service providers, particularly the public and private nonprofit agencies that finance DRT services with public funds. The research products presented in TCRP Research Report 210 include • A transactional data specification, which is the set of rules for data interactions among software systems—encompassing both the structure and syntax for such interactions— that span the entire DRT trip lifecycle. Using these specifications will enable multiple organizations to participate in the DRT trip ordering and delivery process with the assurance that their software systems will have access to the complete set of data needed to perform their specific function(s) properly. Every step in the process will be recorded, and the data details will be available in a standardized data format for subsequent reporting and analysis, including for financial transactions. • A recommended data communication mechanism to allow software systems of multiple service providers to exchange transactional data, using a telegram concept that includes a typology of data messages with mandatory and optional data fields. • A validator software tool that verifies that the telegrams—data messages—generated by a software system intending to communicate with another system are specification com- pliant. The website that hosts the data validation service is http://tcrp.demandtrans.com. F O R E W O R D By Dianne S. Schwager Staff Officer Transportation Research Board

• Key tools to support a more bottom-up approach to specification adoption, a strategy that may yield more near-term results, most likely at a regional or local level. For example, the tools can be used in requests for proposal by public agencies procuring technology or transportation services for DRT systems, to require respondents to comply with the proposed transactional data specification. The report concludes with a discussion of possible ways forward to implement a trans- actional data specification in the DRT industry in the United States, so that the potential benefits of standardized data exchanges can be realized. The key challenges to moving forward quickly with industry-level adoption of a data specification are identified. The goal is to enable DRT services in the United States to more fully and easily participate in an era of new mobility, a new generation of technology-enabled urban transportation services that include bike sharing, car sharing, electric scooters, and on-demand transportation services operated by both private-sector and public-sector entities.

1 Summary 7 Chapter 1 Introduction 7 1.1 About This Research Project 7 1.2 What Is Demand-Responsive Transportation? 9 1.3 What Is Transactional Data for DRT? 9 1.4 The Technology and Market Context of Transactional Data Specifications 11 1.5 Examples of Transactional Data Specifications in Transportation 12 1.6 Who Are the Stakeholders for DRT Data Specifications? 13 1.7 Benefits and Challenges of Implementing Specifications 15 1.8 Strategies for Successful Adoption of Data Specifications 16 1.9 How This Report Is Organized 18 Chapter 2 Principles and Considerations in Developing the Transactional Data Specification 18 2.1 Core Principles for Successful Specification Approaches 19 2.2 Market Considerations 21 2.3 Functional Requirements for DRT Data: The Trip Lifecycle 22 2.4 Models for Transactional Data Flow 25 2.5 Recommended Approach for Specification Transactional Flow 26 2.6 Summary 28 Chapter 3 Examples of Transportation Industry Data Specifications 28 3.1 Example 1—Airline Reservation Data Specification (Request/Response) 30 3.2 Example 2—General Transit Feed Specification for Fixed-Route Transit (Publish and Subscribe) 33 3.3 Example 3—General Transit Feed Specification for Flexible Transit (Publish and Subscribe) 34 3.4 Example 4—DRT Transactional Data in the Denver Trip Exchange Project (Hybrid of Request/Response, Publish and Subscribe, Open API) 38 3.5 Example 5—DRT Transactional Data Standards in Scandinavia (Request/Response) 40 3.6 Comparison and Conclusions 43 Chapter 4 Summary of the Specification 43 4.1 Key Concepts 44 4.2 Telegram Paradigm for DRT Trips 47 4.3 Telegram Descriptions and Typical Data Flow 49 4.4 Examples of Telegrams 52 4.5 Approach for Specification-Compliant Data Communication 56 4.6 Other Considerations for Government-Funded DRT Services 57 4.7 Data Structure 58 4.8 Summary C O N T E N T S

59 Chapter 5 Conclusions and Future Considerations 59 5.1 What Was Learned from the DRT Industry Advisory Panel 60 5.2 Key Lessons from Transportation-Related Examples of Data Specifications 61 5.3 Considerations in Developing the Specification 62 5.4 Key Elements of the DRT Transactional Data Specification 63 5.5 Implementation—Potential Scenarios 64 5.6 Toward a Formal Governance 67 Bibliography 69 Abbreviations and Glossary 73 Appendix A Industry Advisory Panel Members 74 Appendix B Engaging Industry Experts 86 Appendix C Industry Advisory Panel Final Meeting Presentation 99 Appendix D Detailed Specification Description 116 Appendix E XML Listing of Specification 135 Appendix F Validation Tool 138 Appendix G Marketing Document 140 Appendix H Request for Proposals (RFP) Language

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Demand-responsive transportation (DRT) can produce benefits — fewer empty seats, lower cost per passenger, less delay for customers — to both passengers and transportation service providers, particularly the public and private nonprofit agencies that finance DRT services with public funds.

The TRB Transit Cooperative Research Program's TCRP Research Report 210: Development of Transactional Data Specifications for Demand-Responsive Transportation presents a transactional data specification for DRT to facilitate interactions among the software systems that manage these services.

A validator software tool that verifies data messages generated by a software system is available as part of the project.

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