Stage 2 Describing the Starting Point

Public transport is complex and in order to evolve an effective and efficient service, it is necessary to understand this complexity. The complexity exists both within the organization of a service provider and the environment in which the service provider operates. As the external environment impacts the transport system to a large extent, it is necessary for the external environment to be examined properly. Similarly, the internal sub-systems need to be fully appreciated. Adopting a correct and well-informed approach is a pre-requisite for improving public transport.

Understanding and describing the existing situation is the primary step in making improvements. The objectives of this stage are to:

  • Understand the factors that impact on bus service provision
  • Describe the existing baseline situation
  • Evaluate the system and diagnose problems
  • Ensure that all participants in the process are properly informed

“A detailed understanding of the existing transport environment will greatly assist in setting realistic goals and targets”

A large part of the relevant information and data can be obtained while formulating the Comprehensive Mobility Plan (CMP). The focus should be on compiling information concerning the following:

The External Environment

  • Socio-Economic Profile of the Area
  • Demographic Profile
  • Projections
  • Regulatory Framework
  • Institutional Framework
  • City Development Perspective

The Internal (Bus) Environment

  • Infrastructure – capacity and accessibility (length of arterial, sub-arterial roads, general rights of way available)
  • Travel Patterns – O-D Matrix (trip length distribution by purpose)
  • Modal Split (including walking and non-motorised vehicles)
  • Description of Bus System (fleet size, description of the service provider)
  • Strengths and Weaknesses of the Bus System
  • Description of Other Service Providers – by Mode
  • Strengths and Weaknesses of Other Service Providers.
  • Consumer Perspective on Transport Services
  • Role of Citizens Groups.
  • Evaluation of Existing Transport Scenario
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