The potential emergence of mid-tier transit

Jay Wood, Marie Verschuer, Dean Economou, Peter Newman

Article ID: 1659
Vol 7, Issue 1, 2023

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This paper reviews the emerging potential of mid-tier transit, articulating how a complex set of established and new factors could contribute both to better transit outcomes and the associated urban regeneration around station precincts. The analysis is based on two structured literature reviews, supported by insights from the authors’ original research. The first provides an overview of the established and new rationale for mid-tier technologies such as the established Light Rail Transit (LRT) and Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) as well as the new Trackless Tram Systems (TTS). The established role for mid-tier transit is now being given extra reasons for it to be a major focus of urban infrastructure especially due to the need for net zero cities. The second review, is a detailed consideration of established and new factors that can potentially improve patronage on mid-tier transit. The established factors of urban precinct design like stop amenities and improved accessibility and density around stations, are combined with new smart technology systems like advanced intelligent transport systems and real-time transport information for travellers, as well as new transport technologies such as micro-mobility and Mobility on Demand. Also explored are new processes with funding and development models that properly leverage land value capture, public private partnerships, and other entrepreneurial development approaches that are still largely not mainstreamed. All were found to potentially work, especially if done together, to help cities move into greater mid-tier transit.


mid-tier transit; Trackless Tram; Mobility as a Service; Mobility on Demand; micro-mobility

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