Over the next 30 years, technological innovation will make automobile travel more convenient. Automated and connected vehicles will perform an increasing number of driving tasks without human input and will lure customers away from traditional public transportation. This paper first explores key characteristics of public transportation demand in the United States today--based on an international comparison with other Western countries. Next, the paper provides potential pathways on how public transportation agencies and local governments in the United States could respond to the emergence of automated and connected vehicles. The paper argues that space efficiency in urbanized areas and the rush hour commute will remain public transportation’s key strengths. In addition, public transportation will retain its important role in providing mobility for all—-in particular, for those who cannot afford costly automated and connected vehicles. To remain competitive with the car, public transportation agencies and governments have to harness emerging automated and connected technologies for public transportation, integrate public transportation with other mobility services, coordinate and integrate public transportation services regionally, and coordinate planning for public transportation and land use.
Can Public Transportation Compete with Automated and Connected Cars?.
Journal of Public Transportation, 21 (1): 7-18.
Available at: http://scholarcommons.usf.edu/jpt/vol21/iss1/2