Facilitating Creation of Transit System Technology User Groups

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Author(s):

J.C. Arndt, A.S. Edrington, S.M. Sandidge

Publication Date:

October 2010

Abstract:

In recent years, a number of rural transit providers in Texas have purchased computer software to enhance trip scheduling and dispatching. However, many of these agencies are using the software primarily as a recordkeeping system, not as a management tool. Rural providers report that staff too often is not sufficiently familiar with the software capabilities, and the agency is not receiving a good return on the technology investment. The purpose of this research was to inventory current technology applications and vendors by transit agency and to assess the current use(s) of these applications. The researchers also documented plans for technology upgrades or expansions and identified the current technology issues faced by providers. Texas Transportation Institute (TTI) researchers contacted the rural and state-funded urban transit districts in Texas to determine the types of technology currently used or in procurement. Researchers provided the results of this research to all rural and state-funded urban transit districts to enable providers to share and gain from their mutual experiences and to leverage influence with software vendors to address mutual concerns and interests. Researchers facilitated a panel discussion at the Texas Department of Transportation, Public Transportation Division's Semi-Annual Transit Provider Meeting in July 2010 as a way to share experiences about technology implementation. TTI researchers recruited transit agency representatives to serve on the panel. Based on the panel discussion and research findings, researchers recommend technology mentoring and Web-based user community support programs. These programs will support the continued and expanded implementation of technology among rural and small urban transit agencies.

Report Number:

UTCM 09-07-01

Keywords:

Public transit, rural transit, urban transit, technology

Electronic Link(s):

Document/Product: http://utcm.tamu.edu/publications/final_reports/Arndt_09-07-01.pdf

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