Express route between Frankfort and Traverse City
Since 2007 Benzie Bus has operated public transportation in Benzie County, Michigan. Benzie County is a rural area with a lot of people commuting every day to Traverse City for work and education. At present the company mainly operates a Dial-a-Ride system, but also a route between Frankfort and Traverse City three times a day Monday to Friday. Only a few of these commuters travel by public transportation today and a large reason is that the trip takes too long, mainly because of a high service level and no fixed route.
The purpose of this report is to suggest a design for an express route between Frankfort and Traverse City which through short travel times will attract commuters that today travel by car. To attract more passengers Benzie Bus has to make the travel situation more attractive and improve the general opinion of public transportation. In addition there are other political and infrastructural issues to take into consideration.
Through studying relevant theory about public transportation and travel data from Benzie Bus three different alternatives have been created. The first one being that no changes should be made and therefore no additional cost or travelers. The second one being a combination between an express route during peak hours and the existing route during off peak hours. The last option proposes that the route only contains an express route.
The recommendation given to Benzie Bus is that they should conduct surveys finding out what potential travelers want and where they need to go. In addition the demand today suggests that it is reasonable to start with alternative 2 presenting a solution where commuters have quick travels with a reduced risk of driving empty buses during the off peak hours.
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