This paper examines the characteristics of intercity bus riders within Tennessee and proposes methods to identify service gaps and prioritize network expansion, particularly focusing on rural-urban connections. Data were collected through an on-board survey and compared with intercity auto trips. Compared to personal auto users, intercity bus riders are more likely to be of minority races, unemployed, unable to drive, and from low-income households. Five demand levels were determined based on the population distribution with these characteristics. The service areas of existing bus stops were identified and compared with the high demand areas. The result shows that an insufficient number of stops are located in high demand area. Still, approximately 80 percent of stops connect to meaningful destinations such as hospitals. The results imply that bus stations are well-connected to destinations but poorly connected to potential riders. Changes to the current network could better cover high-demand areas.
Yang, Hongtai & Cherry, Christopher R.
Statewide Rural-Urban Bus Travel Demand and Network Evaluation: An Application in Tennessee.
Journal of Public Transportation, 15 (3): 97-111.
Available at: http://scholarcommons.usf.edu/jpt/vol15/iss3/6