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Project ID Number: 473-13

Project Title: Public Transportation Syntheses Series

Co-Principal Investigators:
Joel Volinski, NCTR Director

Dennis Hinebaugh, Transit Program Director

Center for Urban Transportation Research
University of South Florida
Tampa, Florida

External Project Contact: Tara Bartee, FDOT

I. Project Objective

As defined by the Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP), syntheses projects search out and assemble useful knowledge from all available sources, especially from practitioners, and report on current practices in the subject. Each synthesis is a compendium of the best knowledge available on measures found to be successful in resolving specific problems and records practices that were acceptable within the limitations of the knowledge available at the time of its preparation. The Synthesis is an immediately useful document that is tempered by the user's knowledge and experience in the particular problem area. 

The NCTR/FDOT Syntheses Series will on an annual basis identify a set of low cost public transportation research projects requiring a short turn-around time so as to get the information out to the technicians.  Approximately 4-6 projects ranging in cost from $5-15,000 will be performed each year.

II. Project Abstract

The syntheses series will consist of 4-6 public transportation research projects which can be completed in approximately 6 months or less, and range in cost from 5-$15,000.  The set of synthesis projects to be considered for year 1 of the series are as follows:  

  • Waterway Transportation Feasibility Study - looking at potential applications of utilizing ferries and water taxis as a means to reduce congestion and offer alternative modes of travel in Florida
  • Scan of European Research on Mobility Management - quick scan of the dozens of projects implemented over the last 5-10 years in Europe to extract important findings that are transferable to the US; 
  • Safer Stops for Vulnerable Customers - synthesis of literature and practice of making transit stops safer for the elderly, children, disabled and women;  
  • Commuter Choice Managers/Parking Managers - who runs the show? - a synthesis of how parking managers and transportation coordinators are working together to support commuter choice programs;  
  • Carpool Coordination by Elementary School Officials - Synthesis of carpool matching programs/activites for elementary school children journey to/from school and after school care; 
  • ADA Trip Expectations Versus Cost Effective/Efficient Trip Management -  Synthesis of customer outreach activities related to customer expectations of system performance; 
  • Building Transit Oriented Development in Established Communities - synthesis of what steps established car-oriented communities have taken to transform into transit oriented communities; 
  • Advertising on Transit - Revenue Generation Versus Popular Appeal - summarize current transit advertising practices on shelters and buses and its impact on revenue generation, document the perceptions of transit advertising by the public; 
  • Transit Schedules - best practices in developing easy to read/comprehend transit schedules.

III. Task Descriptions

To be provide upon selection of syntheses projects.

IV. Student Involvement

Graduate students will be used to perform research in synthesis topic areas.

V. Relationship to Other Research Projects

Summarizes other research efforts and explores current state of the art for identified topic areas.

VI. Technology Transfer Activities/Peer Review

Synthesis reports will be shared through the NCTR web site, FDOT, and through the USDOT office of Research and Special Programs Administration. 

VII. Potential Benefits of the Project 

Public transportation professionals will have immediate access to the latest information within selected subject areas of critical concern to the industry.


National Center for Transit Research at the Center For Urban Transportation Research University of South Florida 4202 E. Fowler Ave., CUT100 Tampa, FL 33620-5375 (813) 974-3120 (813) 974-5168 Comments: