INSTITUTE OF TRANSPORTATION STUDIES
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, BERKELEY
Public Transportation Systems: Basic Principles of System Design, Operations Planning and Real-Time Control
Carlos F. Daganzo
U.C. Berkeley Graduate Course Notes UCB-ITS-CN-2010-1
This document is based on a set of lecture notes prepared in 2007-2010 for the U.C. Berkeley graduate course “CE259-Public Transportation Systems”–a course targeted to first year graduate students with diverse academic backgrounds. The document is different from other books on public transportation systems because it is informal, has a narrower focus and looks at things in a different way. Its focus is the planning, management and operation of public transportation systems. Important topics such as financing, governance strategies and urban transportation policy are not covered because they are not specific to transit systems, and because other books and courses already treat them in depth. The document is also different because it deemphasizes facts in favor of ideas. Facts that constantly change and can be found elsewhere, such as transit usage statistics and transit system characteristics, are not covered. The document’s way of looking at things, and its structure, is similar to the author’s previous book “Logistics systems analysis” (Springer, 4th edition, 2005) from which many basic ideas are borrowed. (Transit systems, after all, are logistics systems for the movement of people.) Both documents espouse a two-step planning approach that uses idealized models to explore the largest possible solution space of potential plans. The logical organization is also similar: in both documents systems are examined in order of increased complexity so that generic insights evident in simple systems can be put to use as knowledge “building blocks” for the study of more complex systems. The document is organized in 8 modules: 5 on planning (general; shuttle systems; corridors; twodimensional systems; and unconventional transit); 2 on management (vehicles; and employees); and 1 on operations (how to keep buses on schedule). The planning modules examine those aspects of the system that are usually visible to the public, such as routing and scheduling. The management and operations modules analyze the more mundane aspects required for the system to work as designed. Two more modules are in the works: management of special events (e.g., evacuations; Olympics); and operations in traffic. Although the document includes new ideas, which could be of use to academics and professionals, its main aim is as a teaching aid. Thus, a companion document including 7 homework exercises and 3 mini-laboratory projects directly related to the lectures is also made available. It can be obtained by visiting the Institute of Transportation Studies web site and looking for a publication entitled: “Public Transportation Systems: Mini-Projects and Homework Exercises”. Versions of these exercises and mini-projects were used in the 2009 and 2010 installments of CE259: a 14-week course with two 1-hour lectures and one 1-hr discussion session per week. Sample solutions to the mini-projects and exercises can be obtained by university professors by writing to the ITS publications office and requesting a third document entitled: “Public Transportation Systems: Solution Sets”. The various modules were originally compiled by PhD students Eric Gonzales, Josh Pilachowski and Vikash Gayah, directly from the lectures. Subsequently, my colleague Prof. Mike Cassidy used them in an installment of CE259 and offered many comments. This published version has been edited and reflects the input of all these individuals. Their help is gratefully acknowledged. The errors, of course, are mine. The financial support of the Volvo Research and Educational Foundations is also gratefully acknowledged.
Carlos F. Daganzo September, 2010 Berkeley, California