City-Owned Microtransit: Using Data To Increase Ridership And Access To Public Transit

Time: 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm, SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 16

[collapse title=”ABSTRACT” active=”true”] While ‘microtransit’ isn’t exactly new to the transit industry vernacular, use of the term and the movement itself is certainly gathering steam. There has been recent significant growth in trials and experimentation with agency-owned microtransit, which is technology-facilitated, flexible and dynamic on-demand transportation. Currently, more than 38 agencies, including Kansas City Area Transportation Authority (KCATA) in Missouri, Sacramento Regional Transit (SacRT) in California, GoTriangle in North Carolina, Atlanta’s MARTA and the Office of Mobility Innovation in the City of Detroit, are using TransLoc’s microtransit simulator to understand how microtransit can improve public transit efficiency.

KCATA will discuss how the microtransit simulator was used to create KCATA’s upcoming on-demand service. KCATA will discuss its goals for the service and projected benefits. It will also share lessons learned from a previous microtransit experiment with Bridj, including how the upcoming pilot differs.

TransLoc will discuss how microtransit best practices and KCATA’s experience can be replicated elsewhere. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to deploying on-demand services; however, TransLoc’s microtransit simulator, which was used to create KCATA’s upcoming on-demand service, uses data to allow any public transit agency to look at a variety of scenarios and evaluate how microtransit will perform under those conditions. The end result is a report with a variety of situations where microtransit can be beneficial such as metrics on rider experience, wait time, ride duration, cost and vehicle miles traveled. Regardless of what the on-demand service looks like, microtransit has shown to increase ridership by more than 50 percent at the same operating cost. Barriers in the past, such as uncertainty about what a new service will look like and how to run services in a different way than the traditional fixed-route, are no longer issues.

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Dr. Aaron Berdanier is a Data Scientist on the Quantitative Mobility team at TransLoc. With a love for analyzing spatio-temporal data and employing the former to help people master the world around them, Aaron plays a vital role in helping transit agencies utilize data to design and assess microtransit projects.
Previously, Aaron held a Data Scientist role at Duke University where he constructed data infrastructure for an international stream monitoring network.


Tyler Means, Innovative Services Manager at Kansas City Area Transportation Authority (KCATA).

Tyler Means serves as the Innovative Services Manager at the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority. In this role, Means focuses his efforts on creating true mobility management for customers through the advancement of new technologies, new services and new business models. He received his Master’s Degree in Urban Planning from the University of Kansas in 2009, and has worked for the Mid-America Regional Council and TranSystems prior to taking his current position. Throughout his career, Means has advocated for the utilization of new technology and innovative ideas to create customer-focused, integrated mobility solutions.

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A broad audience of public transit agency professionals and city representatives, from all disciplinary (technical) backgrounds. This includes but is not limited to city planners, transportation engineers, computer/data scientists, graduate students (civil, mechanical, electrical, computer engineering), etc.