Urban Public Transport Challenges

David A. Hensher, University of Sydney


This paper focuses on a number of challenges faced by the public transport industry and the prospects for resolution. Many of the issues are often shrouded in ideology, politics and prejudices that typically cloud the real merits of a solution. We argue that public transport is increasingly a niche provider of land passenger transport services, which if positioned and managed better will be capable of delivering increasingly appropriate service levels to satisfy the needs of the set of niche market segments. With this broad scene setting background designed to establish the market patch for public transport, we discuss a high agenda topic of the continuing ‘debate’ on the role of specific technology: light rail and bus-based transitways (what I have coined ‘choice or blind commitment’).

Professor David Hensher is Director of the Institute of Transport Studies in the Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Sydney.

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