NJDOT Research

NJ #
Analysis of Local Bus Markets - Phase II

This research is a follow-up of the Analysis of Local Markets study conducted by the Alan M. Voorhees Transportation Center during 2015-17. Whereas the primary objectives of the previous study were to examine both traffic (i.e., congestion) and air quality (i.e., greenhouse gas) impacts of local buses, the primary objective of the current study is to examine only air quality impacts. The analysis of air quality impacts from transportation in New Jersey is  important because of the high level of air pollution in most parts of the state.
BusWhile the primary objective of this research is to estimate the greenhouse gas (GHG) impacts of local buses, its secondary objective is to examine the socioeconomic and travel characteristics of bus riders. To fulfill these objectives, a survey of bus riders was necessary. The survey was conducted between 6 AM and 4 PM onboard buses of 25 routes in four general areas or county groups of New Jersey: Hudson County, Middlesex/Monmouth County, Burlington County, and Morris County.
The analysis of survey data revealed that a large proportion of riders would use app-based services, drive their own cars, carpool with others, or use taxis to travel to their destinations in the absence of buses. Such diversions to the automobile would generate a significant amount of vehicle miles traveled, which in turn would generate a significant amount of GHG. The analysis of rider and trip characteristics showed that the surveyed buses mostly serve riders from households without cars who have limited options to travel. Survey data analysis also showed that the buses serve a large number of low-income and minority populations. Most riders use buses to travel to and from work, but many also use them for personal business and other purposes. Based on the results, recommendations have been made.

Performing Organization
Rutgers University, Voorhees Transportation Center
Key Word(s)
Local Bus; Rider Survey; Environmental Impact; Rider Characteristics

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