Page 1

6164

1070/7740/1973

An Examination of Pub' CITY-OF-EDMONTON LA

1972 & 1973

Prepared by: THE CITY OF EDMONTON LAND USE AND DEVELOPMENT SECTION TRANSPORTATION PLANNING BRANCH

4400a .E3 E386 1973

Report 73 — 100


1/ 0

AN EXAMINATION

OF

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION

TO AND FROM THE UNIVERSITY

OF ALBERTA 1972

1973

Prepared by: THE CITY OF EDMONTON LAND USE AND DEVELOPMENT SECTION TRANSPORTATION PLANNING BRANCH


(1)

AN EXAMINATION OF PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION TO AND FROM THE UNIVERSITY

OF ALBERTA

REPORT 73-100

CONDUCTED BY: DAVID MORRIS, PLANNER

D. L. MACDONALD, MANAGER, TRANSPORTATION PLANNING BRANCH R. E. PLUNKETT, DIRECTOR, LAND USES AND DEVELOPMENT SECTION


Acknowledgements

A comprehensive study such as this could not have been completed without assistance from many persons.

John Williamson was the project officer who administered the study from the University end. George Zaharia arranged the hiring and working schedules for the students who made the actual counts. Richard Plunkett offered valuable guidance throughout the project and Gail Sandstrom should be commended for her admirable display of patience with the writer throughout the course of the project.

(


TABLE OF CONTENTS Page Title Page Acknowledgements

ii

Table of Contents

iii

List of Diagrams

iv

List of Tables vi - vii

Preface Introduction

viii

Methodology

1

Scope of Study

4

Summary of Findings

7

Findings of 1972 Public Transit Study 1 2 3 4 5 6 7

-

1972 University of Alberta Patronage Characteristics Auto Patronage Increase Peak Hour Patronage Peak Seating Capacities Route Patronage Characteristics Transit Efficiency vs Automobile Efficiency Conculsions and Recommendations

Appendix

10 10 10 13 15 23 26 26 32

Supplement University Public Transit Study 1973 Findings Influence of Strike

la 2a


(iv) LIST OF DIAGRAMS & FIGURES PAGE

DIAGRAM A

University Area Bus Routes and Location of Cordons

2

University of Alberta Transit Routes'

3

Comparison of Inbound Patronage Trends 1970 - 1971 - 1972

11

Comparison of Outbound Patronage Trends 1970 - 1971 - 1972

12

University of Alberta Auto Patronage Cordon Count Points

15

Comparison of Outbound Transit Passengers On S6 and R2 Routes for 1971 - 1972

16

Comparison of p.m. Peak Outbound Passenger Counts for the Years 1971 - 1972

17

Comparison of a.m. Peak Inbound Passenger Counts for the Years 1971 - 1972 - 1973

18

APPENDIX

32

FIGURE 1

2 3

4

Number of Outbound Passengers during the P.M. Peak Wednesday, November 29/72 "- Utilizing E.T.S. - Utilizing Automobiles

33

Number of Outbound Vehicles During P.M. Peak Wednesday, November 29/72

34

Number of Inbound Passengers During the A.M. Peak Wednesday, November 29/72 - Utilizing E.T.S. - Utilizing Automobiles

35

Number of Inbound Vehicles During the A.M. Peak Wednesday, November 29/73 ....

36


(v) LIST OF TABLES PAGE

TABLE 1)

9a

Per Cent Comparison of Total Daily Inbound and Outbound Patrons Utilizing University of Alberta Routes during the A.M. & P.M. Peaks

14

A.M. Peak Patronage To and From the University of Alberta

19

P.M. Peak Patronage To and From the University of Alberta

20

5)

A.M. Peak Bus Capacities

21

6)

P.M. Peak Bus Capacities

22

7)

A.M. and P.M. Peak Automobile Patronage To and From the University of Alberta

25

A Comparison of A.M. & P.M. Peak Passenger Traffic Via Automobiles and Transit Buses To and From the University of Alberta

27

2)

3)

4)

8)

IN SUPPLEMENT

Transit Passengers Arriving and Leaving the University of Alberta

9)

A Comparison of Transit Passengers Arriving and Leaving the University of Alberta 1972 - 1973

4a


(vi)

PREFACE

The Joint City of Edmonton - University of Alberta public transit cordon count study had its origin in October of 1970 when the Students Union requested both parties to undertake the study. The Manager of the City of Edmonton Transportation Planning Branch and the Vice President for Campus Planning and Development agreed to the first and subsequent yearly sections of the study. In order to coordinate the study a project officer from each group was assigned to the task.

From the beginning of the project in November, 1970 again in November, 1971 and in the current study at hand, project costs and resources have been funded and supplied equally by both City and University. The project officers design the study, the University officer and his team hire the student counters required and supply the counting stations. Both officers and their teams train the students for the survey and finally the City officer and his team analyze the data and publish the yearly report. Thus the original three teams, City, Students, and University are very much involved in the success of the project.

The benefits of the project have been substantial to date. The November, 1970 study showed public transit to the University was far more important than generally recognized and indicated the need for increased transit service. The November, 1971 study showed that when transit service to the University was improved, such as the new


Quesnell bus service which resulted from the first study, ridership increased in spite of a slightly lower University enrolment and the provision of additional campus parking. The November, 1972 study has demonstrated that with continued improvements in bus service to the University, such as increased bus frequency and directness in transit routing, student and staff ridership increased a further 7.25% during a period of a stable enrolment. Based on the past three studies (and recent improvements in routing) further increases in transit ridership to the University and area appear certain.

The Public Transit Cordon Count Study provides a rational basis to initiate then monitor and observe the success of public transit service improvements to the University area. Clearly the whole City benefits from this unique cooperative project between a major Canadian city and University.

by: John Williamson University of Alberta Research & Planning Department.


Introduction In 1972, for the third consecutive year, the City of Edmonton and the University of Alberta co-operated in a public transit study to survey the passenger transportation patterns around the University and Health Sciences Centre. Again, the findings indicated an increase in public transit patronage to and from the University area. The data has also provided additional information which can only prove useful in any attempts to improve bus service to the University.

The University of Alberta is the second largest traffic generator in the City of Edmonton. Therefore, not only does this study serve to resolve the problems directly associated with the University public transit system but it may also offer some ideas as to possible solutions for ameliorating bus service to the downtown area.

The following sections of this report explain the process of the study, set out the findings and review the conclusions and recommendations that are offered.


Methodology The survey was conducted during the week of November 27 to December 1, 1972. For each day, Monday to Friday, an all day cordon* count was used to calculate inbound and outbound University public transit patrons (the study was conducted from 6:30 a.m. to 12 midnight on Wednesday, November 29). Diagram A indicates the different bus routes passing through these cordon points. The figures in this report represent transit patrons to and from the University and the Health Sciences Centre.

This transit survey was supplemented by an auto patronage count on Tuesday and Wednesday of the same week. On both days similar results were obtained, therefore, for comparative purposes the Wednesday count was used in all analysis in both 1971 and 1972. Diagram E indicates the various auto cordon points which were in operation from 7:00 a.m. 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday and Wednesday.

For the first time, a walk-in survey was completed in 1972. Previously it was felt that a small but significant number of transit riders walked in from the 109 Street bus lines to the University. Figures for the count, which took place from 7:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, November 29, revealed that only 56 people entered the University in this manner. This insignificant result seemed to be a good indication that in future years this part of the study can be eliminated.

* a cordon refers to any boundary across which movements of any commodity may be measured.

1.


DIAGRAM A University Area Bus Routes and Location of Cordons (Checkpoints A, B,

R2 U2

BUS ROUTE

C, and D)

R2 NOTE: U3 route not included because it was considered internal circulation.

R1

CHECK POINT (Cordon) ON BUS ROUTES

sk

N.T.S.

89 ave

U2 R2

U5 U6 U3 U6

U2 R2 N12 -U3 87 ave

U2 R1 N12-U3

U2 Si S6 U4 R1

U2 U3 U6 R2

U2 U4 U5 S6 R1

ss U4

U4 S6 R1

83 cave

R1 S6 82 ave

R2 95

2


DIAGRAM B

UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA TRANSIT ROUTES

i112-U3 VIA HIGH LEVEL

R1. R2 Downtown VIA 105 ST BRIDGE

5 \ESTMOUNT \

122 AVE UNIV R ITY 87 AVE

AN( /

87 AVE

HEALTH SCIENCES

Wh Ave

* NEW ROUTES

S

R1.R2 Whyte

NOV 72

U3 NOT INCLUDED BECAUSE IT IS CONSIDERED INTERNAL CIRCULATION.

DOWNTOWN VIA WHYTE AVE 99ST 6

BONNIE DOON 79 ST

U4

VIA QUESNEL MEADOWLARK U6 MICHENER PARK ASPEN GARDENS

tr2

Lendrum


Finally, three characteristics concerning the method of data analysis should be noted: (i) the U3 route South, as in previous years was excluded from all data analysis because it was considered to be an internal circulation.

(ii) for purposes of comparing the 1972 results with the 1971 findings a 5% ride through rate was subtracted from the total figures for U2 C.B.D. and U2 Lendrum in Table I.

(iii) Counts at 15 minute intervals were eliminated. It was felt that because of difficulties experienced by bus operators in keeping to schedules during rush hours that a more realistic picture of the results would emerge if data was averaged and compared on an hourly basis.

Scope of the Study A variety of valuable information was obtained from this study. Total inbound and outbound patronage was calculated for the entire study week. These figures were then re-examined in order to calculate specific route patronage, periods of time during which the heaviest public transit patronage occurred and a few meaningful ratios ie: seats/patron, people/bus, people/auto, etc. This survey also presents information which is useful for comparing this study to those done in the past - 1971 and 1970. Therefore, ridership trends on different routes and during different time periods may be observed.

4.


DIAGRAIvi

E

UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA AUTO PATRONAGE CORDON COUNT POINTS N.T.S. SASK. DR.

88

AVE

U of A Campus

Cordon point

Cordon point

87 AVE

87 AVE

cc

83 AVE Cordon point Cordon point

(....D7 82 AvE 82 AVE

Conducted 7:15 am -10:00am and 3:15 pm - 6:00pm E TS C51


The auto patronage count also provides useful information which can illustrate trends concerning auto patronage at the University over the years. Finally the data can be used to a limited degree in comparing transit patronage and automobile patronage from different areas of the city (*figures 1, 2, 3 & 4 in the appendix).

However the present study does not allow detailed origindestination information to be collected. Data of this type would be useful in revealing deficiencies in bus service to different areas of the city, as well as providing a breakdown of transit patronage to the University as opposed to the Health Sciences Centre.

An origin - destination study would also offer information as to the number of public transit patrons and automobile patrons that do in fact remain at the University. In past years it has been difficult to estimate the incidence of people riding through the University irrespective of their mode of transportation.

* because of the manner in which the cordon count was conducted, it can only be inferred that perhaps the cars and their passengers came from the directions indicated on these diagrams. These figures should not be accepted as absolute reality. 6.


SUMMARY OF THE FINDINGS

1) TRANSIT PATRONAGE INCREASE The study indicated 7.25%* increase in route patronage during 1972 over 1971. This is an 11% increase over 1970, the first year of the study.

2) AUTOMOBILE PATRONAGE INCREASE There was a 4%** increase in private automobile utilization as a means of travelling to and from the University area.

3) PEAK HOUR PATRONAGE The 7:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. peak period in 1972 demonstrated a 1% increase when compared to the 1971 study results, this is a 4% increase over 1970. However, the people per bus ratio decreased during this period because of additional buses which were in operation. This is a positive factor, as peak hour buses in the past often experienced severe overcrowding and bus travel during these periods was often considered unpleasant. The increase in the number of buses during this time period was a suggested recommendation resulting from the 1971 survey findings.

The 2:30 - 5:30 p.m. peak period outbound patronage decreased by 10% when compared to the 1971 outbound P.M. peak period. However, total outbound ridership throughout each day was higher than that experienced in 1971. It is apparent that the concentrated P.M. peak period

* this figure has been adjusted to account for ride through passengers. ** this increase was calculated after a 10% ride through rate was used to adjust the total number of autos counted.

7.


outbound patronages reported in the 1971 study are now becoming less prominent with patronage patterns now being more evenly distributed throughout the day. This is one of the most positive results of an improved service. A more balanced peak to base service is strived for by all transit systems.

4) DAILY PATRONAGE CONSISTANT Again this year E.T.S. patronage was reasonably consistant throughout the week.

5) PATRONAGE INCREASE UP ON MOST ROUTES A total daily patronage increase was evident, with most routes displaying small patronage increases. In certain instances, however, because of some route changes it was difficult to compare the 1972 study data with information collected in past studies.

For example, the Rl, R2 line to the C.B.D. experienced a decreased patronage. This was attributable to the addition of the N12 U3 line running directly from the North-East area of the City to the University. This route no longer necessitated bus users of the NorthEast to transfer to the Rl in order to get to the University. A corollary to this is that R1 - R2 buses are no longer as overloaded as in past years. Therefore this route is now not only more attractive to its present patrons, but also to potential riders. It should be noted that the U2 Lendrum line demonstrated a sharp increase in ridership.

8.


6) PEAK HOUR CONGESTION The addition of buses to routes during the peak A.M. and P.M. periods, as well as a 4% increase in automobiles in the vicinity of the University has further added to traffic congestion around the University. Every effort must be made to encourage heavier utilization of public transit in order to decrease congestion in the vicinity of the University. This is especially relevant when one compares the efficiency of moving large numbers of people by bus rather than by auto.

7) TRANSIT MORE EFFICIENT During the peak periods the Edmonton Transit System bus carried 38 people per bus while autos carried only 1.4 people per car. The answer to decreasing congestion is therefore more than apparent. The uncontrolled utilization of automobiles as a mode of transport to and from the University area must be seriously examined and limited.

9.


FINDINGS OF THE 1972 PUBLIC TRANSIT STUDY

A comparison of the data collected this year with the data collected in 1971 and 1970 has indicated that a number of changes are occurring in public transit patronage patterns around the University. While some changes can be explained, others are of a more nebulous nature making exact analysis difficult.

1) 1972 University of Alberta Patronage Characteristics Approximately 82,000 people used the E.T.S. during the study period to travel to and from the University area. This was a 7.25% increase in patronage when compared to the 1971 survey findings.

Table 1 offers a general description of ridership patterns by routes as well as a comparison of the 1971 and 1972 study findings by total daily route patronage. Diagrams C & D illustrate the steadily increasing patronage of the public transit system since 1970.

2) Auto Patronage Increase Table 7 illustrates a 4% increase in the use of automobiles in 1972 when compared to 1971. These vehicles contributed to the traffic congestion already prevalent in and around the University.

In order to validate a comparison of cordon count figures collected in 1971 and 1972, the count taken at 117 Street had to be subtracted from the 1972 data because this station did not exist in 1971. The 1972 data indicates that some 8,581 vehicles carrying 11,377 people entered the University area during the 7:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. peak

10.


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period on Wednesday, while 8,292 vehicles carrying 11,602 people left the University during the afternoon peak period between 3:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m.

The major difficulty in calculating automobile patronage to and from the University is estimating the number of automobiles that did not remain at the University. An origin - destination study would present more accurate figures concerning automobile patronage and the actual number of cars that stay at the University.

A ride through study was conducted at the University in 1968 and it indicated that approximately 10% of the automobiles counted as entering and leaving the University were in fact merely riding through. For purposes of this study the 10% ride through figure was considered valid and has already been used to adjust the auto cordon count.

3) Peak Hour Patronage The total A.M. peak inbound patrons numbered 21,819 (table 3). Table 2 indicates that approximately 57% of the total daily inbound traffic occurred during the A.M. peak in 1972. This is a 1% decrease in comparison to the 1971 survey results. This decrease in peak patronage resulted in spite of an increase in total daily inbound traffic.

The three hour P.M. peak showed a daily outbound patronage average of 4,520 patrons or 53% of the daily total outbound traffic. The figures for 1971 indicate that 65% of the total outbound

13.


PER CENT COMPARISON OF TOTAL DAILY INBOUND & OUTBOUND PATRONS

TABLE 2

UTILIZING UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA ROUTES DURING THE A.M. & P.M. PEAKS FOR TUESDAY NOVEMBER 23, 1971 AND TUESDAY NOVEMBER 28, 1972

A.M. INBOUND 1971 1972

ROUTE

P.M. OUTBOUND 1971 1972

ROUTE

CBD

55%

50%

CBD

63%

45%

R-2 WHYTE AVE.

68%

61%

63%

58%

54%

44%

R-1

R-2

CBD

47%

43%

U-2

R-1 WHYTE AVE.

60%

68%

R-1

S-6

50%

51%

S-6

63%

U-2 LENDRUM

R-1

R-2

U-2

CBD

U-2 LENDRUM

61%

U-4

63%

65%

U-4

72%

57%

U-5

72%

70%

U-5

67%

40%

AVERAGE

58%

57%

AVERAGE

65%

53%


traffic took place during this period. It has been previously noted that there was a very dramatic decrease in ridership during the P.M. peak.

Diagram G illustrates this evident decrease in peaking. Because total daily outbound ridership has increased we can surmise that there has been a tendancy for outbound traffic to be more equal throughout the day. Diagram F illustrates the fact that both the S6 and R2 routes have dispersed their respective loads more evenly throughout the day, a very positive trend when compared to the same data collected for 1971*.

4) Peak Seating Capacities Transit seated capacities, during the a.m. and p.m. peaks have decreased by approximately 8% from an average of 81% in 1971 to 73% in 1972. This is a direct result of the addition of more buses to both the a.m. and p.m. peak periods. This meant that the inbound patrons per bus ratio dropped from 40 people in 1971 to 38 in 1972 during the a.m. peak. The outbound ratio decreased from 45 people per bus in 1971 to 39 people per bus in 1972.

The results of both the 1970 and 1971 survey indicated very pronounced high patronage peak periods within both the a.m. and p.m. larger peak periods. To a lesser extent this phenomena occurred again in 1972. The addition of more buses during both the a.m. and p.m. peak periods has resulted in this overcrowding tendancy on buses to be less apparent in 1972.

* It is difficult to illustrate this p.m. peak decrease on other routes because of route changes that have occurred since the 1971 survey. Therefore, to illustrate this point the S6 and R2 routes were chosen as examples.

15.


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TABLE 3

NUMBER OF PASSENGERS A.M. PEAK PATRONAGE TO AND FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA 7:00 A.M. - 10:00 A.M.

WEEK OF NOVEMBER 27 - DECEMBER 1, 1972 ROUTE

MONDAY INBOUND OUTBOUND

TUESDAY INBOUND OUTBOUND

WEDNESDAY INBOUND OUTBOUND

THURSDAY INBOUND OUTBOUND

FRIDAY INBOUND OUTBOUND

TOTAL PATRONS SEATS /PATRONS INBOUND OUTBOUND SEATS AVAILABLE

N12 - U3

232

16

155

70

321

78

194

63

130

49

1,032

276

1.79

R1 - R2 CBD

653

128

509

156

701

123

461

139

498

124

2,822

670

1.77

U2

520

275

514

184

535

171

514

230

587

224

2,670

1,084

1.50

R1 - R2 WHYTE

953

60

839

70

983

53

619

93

859

60

4,253

336

1.20

S6

496

48

453

51

543

45

551

61

415

59

2,458

264

1.8

U2 LENDRUM

746

16

775

42

714

36

638

77

793

13

3,666

184

1.11

U4

535

17

296

17

406

13

297

19

380

13

1,914

79

1.05

250

23

246

50

230

36

246

58

180

36

1,152

103

1.26

275

15

272

23

281

21

328

28

277

20

1,433

107

1.329

31

5

43

7

143

16

106

15

186

11

509

54

3.224

4,689

603

4,102

670

4,873

592

3,954

783

4,305

609

21,819

3,257

U6

CBD

SOUTH

U5 U6

NORTH

TOTAL DAILY PATRONS AM PEAK INBOUND (SEATING CAP.) RATIO (SEATS/PATRON) % CAPACITY (PATRON SEATS)

1.34

77%

1.53

65%

1.30

77%

1.58

63%

1.41

70%

1.43

70%


TABLE 4

NUMBER OF PASSENGERS P.M. PEAK PATRONAGE TO AND FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA 2:30 P.M. - 5:30 P.M.

Week of November 27 - December 1, 1972

ROUTE N12 -U3

MONDAY INBOUND OUTBOUND

TUESDAY INBOUND OUTBOUND

WEDNESDAY INBOUND OUTBOUND

THURSDAY INBOUND OUTBOUND

FRIDAY INBOUND OUTBOUND

TOTAL PATRONS INBOUND OUTBOUND

SEATS/PATRON SEATS AVAILABLE

30

134

37

168

40

188

36

232

53

211

196

933

2.25

R1-R2 C.B.D.

191

1033

179

881

200

918

227

896

227

975

1024

4703

1,02

U2 C.B.D.

243

532

254

569

232

573

250

516

254

505

1233

2695

1.46

R1-R2 WHYTE

164

894

129

790

155

740

146

839

274

740

868

4003

1.09

S6

106

638

130

597

98

707

167

682

217

721

718

3345

1.22

U2 LENDRUM

94

600

109

624

121

609

98

629

70

475

492

2942

1.16

U4

23

357

30

260

42

330

39

277

30

234

164

1458

1.17

U6 SOUTH

47

150

65

215

51

237

60

222

81

154

304

978

1.64

U5

18

183

21

172

23

242

18

246

14

205

94

1048

1.44

7

40

10

31

16

57

8

46

17

58

58

232

6.47

926

4561

964

4312

979

4601

1049

4585

1237

4278

5189

21568

U6 NORTH TOTAL DAILY PATRONS

P.M. PEAK OUTBOUND (Seating Capacity Ratio) (Seats/Patron) PER CENT CAPACITY (Patron Seats)

1.26

79%

1.328

75%

1.29

77%

1.30

76%

1.28

77%

1.35

77%


BUS CAPACITIES (SEATS AVAILABLE)

TABLE 5

A.M. PEAK 7:00 A.M. - 10:00 A.M. Week of November 27 - December 1, 1972 A.M. PEAK SEATING CAPACITIES NUMBER OF A.M. PEAK BUSES INBOUND-OUTBOUND TO & FROM THE U OF A ROUTE

MONDAY IN OUT

TUESDAY IN OUT

WEDNESDAY IN OUT

THURSDAY IN OUT

FRIDAY IN OUT

BUS TOTALS OUT IN

TOTAL SEATS INBOUND & OUTBOUND

8

6

8

8

6

6

8

6

6

6

37

32

1850

1600

3450

R1 R2 CBD

20

14

20

14

20

15

20

14

20

16

100

73

5000

3650

8650

U2 CBD

16

11

16

12

16

12

16

12

16

12

80

60

4000

3000

7000

R1 R2 WHYTE

21

21

20

19

22

20

20

22

19

25

102

107

5100

5350

10450

S6

18

17

17

16

17

17

16

17

18

16

86

83

4300

4150

8450

U2 LENDRUM

16

15

18

18

15

14

16

16

16

17

81

80

4050

4000

8050

U4

7

7

8

7

10

7

7

7

8

7

40

35

2000

1750

3750

U6 SOUTH

6

5

5

6

6

6

6

6

5

6

28

29

1400

1450

2850

U5

8

7

8

5

6

6

9

7

7

9

38

34

1900

1700

3600

U6 NORTH

6

5

6

6

7

6

7

6

7

6

33

29

1650

1450

3100

126

109

126

111

127

109

125

113

122

120

*625

562

31250

28100

N12 U3

TOTALS TOTAL A.M. PEAK INBOUND-OUTBOUND BUSES

235

237

236

238

242

1187

* 19 Buses were undesignated TOTAL A.M. PEAK INBOUND-OUTBOUND SEATS AVAILABLE iv r

SEAT TOTALS (Bus Totals x 50) IN OUT

MONDAY IN OUT

TUESDAY IN OUT

6300 5450

6300 5550

WEDNESDAY IN OUT 6350 5450

THURSDAY IN OUT

IN

FRIDAY OUT

6250 5650 6100 6000

59350


TABLE 6

BUS CAPACITIES (SEATS AVAILABLE) P.M. PEAK 2:30 P.M. - 5:30 P.M.

WEEK OF NOVEMBER 27 - DECEMBER 1, 1972 P.M. PEAK SEATING CAPACITIES

ROUTE N12 - U3

MONDAY IN OUT

NUMBER OF P.M. BUSES INBOUND - OUTBOUND TO AND FROM THE U. OF A. TUESDAY WEDNESDAY THURSDAY FRIDAY IN OUT IN OUT IN OUT IN OUT

BUS TOTALS IN OUT

SEAT TOTALS (bus totals x 50) IN OUT

TOTAL SEATS INBOUND & OUTBOUND

6

9

5

9

6

8

5

8

6

8

28

42

1400

2100

3500

R1 - R2 CBD

17

18

16

20

19

19

17

20

19

19

88

96

4400

4800

9200

U2

CBD

12

17

14

15

13

17

12

16

12

14

63

79

3150

3950

7100

R1 - R2 WHYTE

16

18

19

17

17

18

17

18

17

16

86

87

4300

4350

8650

S6

16

16

19

16

17

19

15

16

19

15

86

82

4300

4100

8400

02 LENDRUM

12

13

12

15

15

14

13

12

15

14

67

68

3350

3400

6750

U4

5

7

7

6

5

6

7

9

7

6

31

34

1550

1700

3250

U6 SOUTH

7

5

6

6

5

6

6

9

7

6

31

32

1550

1600

3150

U5

5

6

5

6

5

6

5

6

5

6

25

30

1250

1500

2750

U6 NORTH

5

6

6

6

6

6

5

6

5

6

27

30

1350

1500

2850

101

115

109

116

108

119

102

120

112

110

TOTALS

TOTAL P.M. 216 PEAK INBOUND & OUTBOUND BUSES

225

227

222

222

* 29 BUSES WERE NOT DESIGNATED MONDAY IN OUT

TUESDAY IN OUT

5050 5750

5450 5700

F.)

TOTAL P.M. PEAK INBOUND-OUTBOUND SEATS AVAILABLE WEDNESDAY THURSDAY FRIDAY IN OUT IN OUT IN OUT 5400 5950

5100 6000

5600 5500

*532 580

26,600 29,000

1112

55,600


In order to further decrease the ratio of people per bus during the a.m. and p.m. peaks and reduce excessive overcrowding at these times, additional buses would have to be used. However, unless new traffic improvements are designed to decrease the congestion caused by the ubiquitous automobile, the addition of more buses would not be in the best interest of all of the commuters to and from the University of Alberta. It is in this respect that the University must realize that transit is rapidly approaching its peak efficiency in providing service to the University, unless the University takes immediate action to negate the use of the automobile to and from its environs.

5) Route Patronage Characteristics

Checkpoint A

R1 R2 Downtown - this route experienced the largest decline in patronage. An examination of table 1 indicates this substantial decrease. This decline can be directly attributed to the new N12 - U3 route. This route now provides transit patrons from North-East Edmonton with direct service to and from the University. Prior to this many passengers were forced to transfer to the R2 before they could get to the University.

This new N12 - U3 routing has also served to increase the attractiveness of travelling by bus to and from the northeast area of the City. At the same time a substantial decrease in overcrowding has resulted on the R1 R2 line.

23.


U2 Downtown - this route remained relatively consistant with patronage counts obtained in 1971.

N12 U3 - this was the first year of operation for this route and it averaged 750 patrons daily. This is quite phenomenal considering that the route was initiated just prior to the survey and that it usually takes at least one year to attain ultimate ridership levels.

Checkpoint B

R1 R2 Whyte Avenue and S6 - both of these routes remained unchanged in relation to 1971 survey findings.

Checkpoint C

U4, U6 - little change in patronage figures were noted when data from 1971 and 1972 was compared.

U2 Lendrum - this route demonstrated the most dramatic ridership change. The figures for 1972 indicated a 33% increase when compared to the data collected in 1971. This route has experienced an increase in patronage partly because of a rapid population growth taking place in South Edmonton. However, it may be that an error in calculations in the 1971 survey resulted in less than the real number of patrons being counted in 1971. This then would indicate that the 33% increase in patronage may not have occurred.

Checkpoint D

U5, U6 - the U5 patronage decreased slightly. This was a result of the fact that a new U6 route north was operating for the first time in 1972. By combining both

24.


TABLE 7

November 29, 1972 15 MINUTES ENDING

A.M. AND P.M. PEAK AUTOMOBILE PATRONAGE TO AND FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA 7:00 A.M. - 10:00 A.M.

7:15

7:30

7:45

8:00

8:15

8:30

8:45

9:00

9:15

9:30

9:45

10:00

TOTAL

VEHICLES IN OCCUPANTS IN

368 502

529 721

1024 1551

1115 1628

779 1117

926 1289

1063 1463

971 1379

531 722

402 530

441 587

432 570

8581 12059

VEHICLES OUT OCCUPANTS OCT

143 175

179 210

295 352

323 374

343 417

279 322

254 308

263 300

240 290

178 206

172 226

190 239

2859 3419

IN OCCUPANT RATE

1.4

1.4

1.5

1.5

1.4

1.4

1.4

1.4

1.4

1.3

1.3

1.3

1.4

OUT OCCUPANT RATE

1.2

1.2

1.2

1.2

1.2

1.2

1.3

1.2

1.2

1.2

1.3

1.3

1.2

November 29, 1972 15 MINUTES ENDING

TOTALS FOR 1971

PER CENT CHANGE

8121 11377

7624 10821

+ 6 + 5

2756 3284

2666 3167

+ 3 + 4

-117 ST. DATA

3:00 P.M. - 6:00 P.M.

3:15

3:30

3:45

4:00

4:15

4:30

4:45

5:00

5:15

5:30

5:45

6:00

VEHICLES IN OCCUPANTS IN

279 382

268 378

320 406

400 431

333 453

376 514

406 546

416 546

357 456

298 384

309 419

201 403

4063 5418

VEHICLES OUT OCCUPANTS OUT

580 804

532 730

577 774

619 856

929 1296

734 1002

1119 1620

843 1199

880 1229

587 821

558 796

334 475

8292 11602

IN OCCUPANT RATE

1.3

1.4

1.3

1.3

1.3

1.4

1.3

1.3

1.3

1.3

1.3

1.3

1.3

OUT OCCUPANT RATE

1.4

1.3

1.3

1.4

1.4

1.4

1.4

1.4

1.4

1.4

1.4

1.4

1.4

* 117 Street was not counted in 1971 therefore to tabulate per cent change from 1971 - 1972 it was excluded from 1972 data.

TOTALS FOR 1971

PER CENT CHANGE

3877 5157

3440 4532

+ 11 + 12

7915 11047

7651 10791

TOTAL - 117 ST. DATA

+ +

3 2


the U5 and U6 patronage, it is apparent that the figures show a small increase in passengers over the U5 total for 1971.

6) Transit Efficiency VS Automobile Efficiency The facts presented in Table 8 are irrefutable. Peak bus capacities average 38 people per vehicle, while automobiles average 1.4 people per vehicle.

During the a.m. peak 133 buses brought 4,952 people to the University while 8,581 automobiles transported 12,057 people to the University area. It is more than obvious that the automobile is responsible for the present traffic congestion and pedestrian safety hazard at the University.

The increase in transit patronage from 1970 to

1971 resulted in some 2,000 fewer automobiles on campus. The transit ridership increase in 1972 has resulted in 3,300 fewer automobiles on campus. Therefore, it is apparent that if traffic congestion is to decrease in the vicinity of the University, efforts must be made to increase public transit patronage.

7) Conclusions and Recommendations The survey findings indicate that the most popular method of transportation, for purposes of travelling to and from the University, is the automobile. It is necessary to determine if this is a commendable situation when reviewing both traffic patterns and mode split which presently exist at the University of Alberta.

26.


A COMPARISON OF A.M. - P.M. PEAK PASSENGER TRAFFIC VIA AUTOMOBILES AND TRANSIT BUSES TO AND FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA FOR WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 29, 1972

TABLE 8

A.M. THREE HOUR PEAK 7:00 A.M. - 10:00 P.M. A.M. PEAK CARRYING CAPACITIES INBOUND VEHICLES TRANSIT AUTO

INBOUND PASSENGERS

OUTBOUND VEHICLES

OUTBOUND PASSENGERS

127

189

4,873

592

8,581

2,859

12,059

3,419

LOADING RATIO (PASSENGER/VEHICLE) OUTBOUND INBOUND 38.37

5.431

1.4

1.20

P.M. THREE HOUR PEAK 2:30 P.M. - 5:30 P.M. P.M. PEAK CARRYING CAPACITIES INBOUND VEHICLES TRANSIT * AUTO

OUTBOUND VEHICLES

INBOUND PASSENGERS

OUTBOUND PASSENGERS

108

119

979

4,601

4,063

8,292

5,418

11,602

LOADING RATIO (PASSENGER/VEHICLE) OUTBOUND INBOUND 9.0 1.33

39 1.4

COMBINED A.M. & P.M. PASSENGER TRAFFIC INBOUND AND OUTBOUND PEAKS VEHICLES TRANSIT AUTO

PASSENGERS

LOADING RATIO (PASSENGERS/VEHICLE)

246

9,474

38.5

16,873

23,661

1.4

* P.M. PEAK FOR AUTOS WAS 3:00 P.M. - 6:00 P.M. THIS TIME PERIOD DOES NOT SIGNIFICANTLY AFFECT THE RESULTS AS COMPARED TO BUS PEAK PERIOD OF 2:30 P.M. - 5:30 P.M.


If the present traffic congestion around the University during peak hours is examined and if consideration is given to both the great expanses of land devoted to parking automobiles and the safety hazard to pedestrians resulting from an ever increasing number of automobiles concentrated in a small physical space, during a short period of time - the answer must be not To have a large number of automobiles at the University is not the best situation. Continually catering to the demands of automobile users in and around the University area cannot solve the transportation problems presently being experienced.

When comparing the automobile and the bus as methods of transportation, the advantages of the automobile can be listed in two broad inter-related categories. First, it can be argued that the car is more convenient because it offers both spontaneous and door to door service. It is also apparent, in most instances, that the car allows the public the advantage of lower travel times when compared to the bus service. If these criticisms of the bus service are accepted, then an attempt must be made to rectify them.

The level of bus service which the E.T.S. offers is directly related to the number of people making use of it. Therefore, in order to increase the efficiency of service, in regards to both the number of buses on particular routes and the times of operation, as well as offering a more varied bus route system, public transit patronage must increase. However, potential transit customers are lost to the E.T.S. when commuters realize than in many instances it is easier to take a car than wait for a bus. This result can be verified if an examination is made of the results of the past University transit studies.

28.


As patronage increased over the years, bus service to and from the University increased. Also, a more efficient transit service has developed offering a more comprehensive route scheme. These developments have worked as catalysts to further increase public transit patronage to and from the University. If efforts were made to curtail the use of the automobile at the University it is possible that this catalyst effect could multiply greatly.

It is also obvious that the slower travel times experienced by bus travellers is, to some extent, the result of the heavy traffic congestion caused by automobiles during peak travel times.

It should be noted then that many of the deficiencies attributed to public transit systems, as opposed to automobiles, are not inherent in the transit system itself. The problems result from direct conflict with the automobile. Therefore, the most important reconuaendation that this study can make is that there should be an entire revaluation of policy concerning various transportation modes in the vicinity of the University.

University and City officials must re-examine their positions as they relate to the use of automobiles and buses in the vicinity of the University. It is imperative, if public transit efficiency is to improve, that consideration be given to constraining the use of automobiles in the vicinity of the University. By continually attempting to fulfill the needs of automobile users, with the provision of more parking and better traffic situations suited to

29.


automobiles, prospective customers to the E.T.S. are lost. As discussed earlier, increased auto patronage also negates the possibility of providing a better public transit system in other ways. At present there are a few solutions which may provide some relief to difficulties which the E.T.S. are experiencing at the University.

It is important to stress at this time, that if any detailed solutions are to be worked out, it will be necessary to complete an origin - destination survey for both the University and the Health Sciences Centre. Analysis of data from a study of this nature could indicate more clearly specific deficiencies with the Edmonton Transit System and its operation at the University. The study may offer information indicating routes that could support more express buses thus decreasing travel times for many transit patrons.

Again, the data collected from the 1972 survey has demonstrated that many buses are experiencing longer travel times per trip, because of heavy traffic congestion which confronts them at the University during peak periods. This congestion is the result of approximately 8,000 cars each carrying 1.4 people and some 600 buses carrying 38 people each. These figures indicate that it is important at this time to develop new traffic schemes which are more conducive to the movement of buses. Perhaps specific streets within and around the University could be designated for bus use only. There should be efforts to improve the congestion for buses between 109 Street and 114 Street. If bus travel times can be reduced there is a possibility of increasing public transit patronage. The public transit system may

30.


never be able to offer all of the conveniences of automobiles in every specific situation, but every effort to improve bus service should be made.

In conclusion it must be reasserted that it is not only important to improve bus service, but it is also necessary to re-evaluate the use of the automobile at the University and its conflict with the public transit system.

31.


U APPENDIX"

32.


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36.


"SbPPLEMENT"

"University Public Transit Study - 1973"

The University public transit study for 1973 commenced November 26 and was to be completed November 30, 1973.

However a strike

by Edmonton Transit System operators resulted in the termination of the study on Wednesday, November 28. In the past information from the University public transit studies was collected, analysed and compared on a weekly basis. Generally there were two ridership patterns which were apparent during past studies. Class scheduling at the University resulted in Monday - Wednesday - Friday patronage patterns to be the same, while Tuesday and Thrusday Study results demonstrated distinct similarities. Since the 1973 study terminated abruptly there was no opportunity to observe whether or not this phenomena occurred again. Also, because the threat of a strike existed during the week of the study it was felt that real results were not being obtained from all cordon points. Therefore, with the limited data collected only general partonage trends could be observed for 1973.

Findings The 1973 study took place from 7:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. on Monday and Wednesday and from 7:00 a.m. - 12:00 midnight on Tuesday. The information obtained from these three survey days can be compared to a limited degree, with the first three days of data that was collected in the 1972 transit study. *

* In 1972 the Monday and Tuesday counts were from 7:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. and Wednesday from 7:00 a.m. - 12:00 midnight. Therefore, the same number of hours are involved 1-a


An examination of the figures in table 9, indicate a 4% increase in public transportation ridership over the three day period. In 1972 approximately 49,375 used public transit while 51,350 transit patrons were counted in 1973. Again this year a 5% ridethrough rate has been subtracted from the U2 Lendrum and U2 CBD routes. The U3 route south has also been eliminated from calculations because it was considered to be internal circulation. If the data collected in the 1973 study is examined in more detail its inconsistant nature is very apparent. The figures for Monday, indicate that inbound ridership increased by 1% while outbound ridership decreased by 1%. Transit studies in past years have always displayed outbound patronage increasing at a greater rate than inbound patronage. It is very probable that this reversal of patronage trends was due to the threat of a strike by E.T.S. operators. As was discussed earlier it was impossible to make any detailed comparison of data from 1972 to 1973 for Tuesday and Wednesday because of the time periods involved. It must be stressed that the 4% increase in patronage occurred during abnormal conditions and is really quite phenomenal if one considers the influence which the threat of a strike undoubtedly had on normal public transportation patterns.

Influence of the Strike In the final planning stages of the 1973 public transit study project staff were aware of the possibility of a strike by E.T.S. operators. Unfortunately this strike action had developed at a faster 2-a


rate than had been anticipated. The week of November 26, 1973 had been designated for the study because it would hopefully yield results most comparative with studies completed in past years, (the last week in November was the pre-determined week to be used in all of the transit studies). Therefore, the decision was made by project co-ordinators to proceed with the survey. On Friday, November 23, the employees of the transit system served notice of intention to strike at 4:00 a.m. Monday, November 26. As talks with labor and management were to continue it was hoped that a settlement would be reached. On Sunday, November 26, various media in Edmonton made strong suggestions that a strike was imminent and that the public should make alternate transportation plans if they normally used public transportation. The strike was averted at 3:45 a.m. on Monday morning, however these circumstances definitely affected the normal Monday public transit ridership patterns. It was observed that automobile traffic at the University was heavier than normal; thus, it could be surmised that public transit riders who had made pre-arranged transportation plans made use of them. It may also be inferred that Monday's inbound figures were representative of heavily dependent transit riders who patronized E.T.S. services in spite of the strike threat. Even under these conditions, the results of the three day study indicated a 4% increase in ridership. This suggests the preference of public transit over other modes of transportation. It is therefore justifiable to suspect that had the threat of a strike not influenced the 1973 study, results would have demonstrated a much greater increase in the utilization of E.T.S. services.

3-a


Table 9

Comparison of Transit Passengers Arriving and Leaving the University of Alberta 1972 - 1973

Number of Passengers

1972

MONDAY 1973 Difference

1972

TUESDAY 1973*

Diff.

1972*

WEDNESDAY 1973

Diff.

1972

TOTAL 1973

Diff.

23,712

24,939

+1,227

Inbound

7,747

7,327

- 420

7,591

9,237 +1,646

8,374

8,375

+1

Outbound

8,315

8,699

+ 384

8,124

9,067 + 943

9,225

8,636

-589

25,664 26,402

+

16,062

16,026

- 36

15,715

18,304 +2,589

17,599

17,011

-588

49,376

+1,965

Total

% Change

0%

+13%

-8%

* The study was conducted from 7:00 a.m. - 12:00 Midnight. All other figures represent data collected from 7:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.

51,341

+4%

738

Edmonton (Alta.) - 1973 - An examination of public transportation to and from the University of A...  

An examination of public transportation to and from the University of Alberta

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