Transit Station Area Land Use/Site Assessment with Multiple Criteria: An Integrated GIS-Expert System Prototype

Journal of Public Transportation Article in Volume 3, Issue 1 (2000) by Reza Banai, University of Memphis        

Abstract

This article is intended to assist decision-makers confronted with the problem of determining the suitability of a site with a proposed light rail transit (LRT) stop as a transit supportive (re)development by exploring a prototype, integrated Geographic Information System (GIS) and decision-support system. An inclusive concept of a hierarchy is presented in which the multiple, diverse dimensions of the land-use/site assessment problem-from goal, criteria, to alternatives-can be embedded in deciding suitability of a site as a transit-supportive development. Framed as a multicriteria procedure, and integrated with a GIS, the decision-support system provides the flexibility to account not only for the configurational or physical features of the built environment and the patterns of growth (or decline) of the population and employment in the region, but also the socioeconomic, demographic, and trip-making characteristics of the targeted population. The joint effects of the population (demand) characteristics and the features of the built environment of land use/transportation (supply) are reflected in the scores of the site assessment. Furthermore, the prototype facilitates decision making by deriving the relative importance of the multiple “supply” and “demand” factors strategically and adaptively vis-a-vis the site-specific constraints and opportunities. Finally, criteria-weighted land-use suitability scores are computed and displayed to indicate the suitability of the site as a transit-supportive development. The multicriteria part of this prototype is implemented with a C++ program as an interactive, expert decision-support system integrated with a GIS.