This paper presents a summary of the findings of a one-year research project that was sponsored by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and conducted on the characteristics of shopping trips using bus transit. The study involved the collection of extensive amounts of data on shopping trips and on the shoppers themselves in a large sampling area in California. It describes the integrated environment a shopper faces starting from his or her home and ending at the entrance of a mall. This includes analyzing the distances from home to bus stops, travel time on the bus, frequency of transfers, and the walking environment from bus stops to mall entrances. Also characterized are the distributions of shoppers and bus users on the basis of gender and age and the implications of these distributions in regard to what should be improved in bus service. Several other attributes of shoppers and shopping trips were collected, analyzed, and included in the recommendations. A total of 45 malls, 22 transit authorities and more than 1,000 shoppers were surveyed through relatively lengthy questionnaires for their opinions and for data on a wide range of issues. The most important finding of this work is that no organized or significant efforts exist between mall operators and transit authorities, to continuously monitor and improve shopping by bus, especially·in regard to the location of bus stops around malls and the safety and convenience of the walking environment for a shopper who uses the bus and walks to and from the mall entrance.
Nsour, Salameh A.
The Characteristics of Shopping Trips by Bus Transit.
Journal of Public Transportation, 1 (3): 71-85.
Available at: http://scholarcommons.usf.edu/jpt/vol1/iss3/5