The Basics are high-level posts covering key transit topics. Many of these pieces are referenced as background material for more recent posts.

  • The Transit Ridership Recipe
    How do we make transit useful to as many people as possible, in order to produce high ridership?
  • On Operating Cost
    The cost of transit is mostly the cost of operations.  If you don’t understand how it works, you don’t understand transit.
  • On Transit Integration or Seamlessness
    Should adjacent agencies be consolidated?  What makes a good border between transit agencies?
  • Walking Distance to Transit
    A huge range of consequential transit planning decisions depend on assumptions about how far customers will be willing to walk.
  • Branching: Transit Is Like a River
    What does it mean for transit service when a line splits in two? Sometimes this isn’t as simple as it seems.
  • The Triangle of Causes: Transit, Development, Ridership
    How can we conceptualize the relationship between a place’s development pattern, transit service, and the resulting ridership outcome?
  • The Case for Frequency Mapping
    One of the most important aspects of transit is how often it comes, but one of the fundamental tools to understanding transit service rarely communicates this effectively.
  • Benefits of Transit
    What are we getting out of all this transit service, anyway?
  • Network Redesigns: Why and How
    When should a transit agency consider major changes to its network, and once they’ve decided to do so, what are the practical steps to actually develop a strong plan for the future?
  • Illusions of Travel Time
    Transit travel time estimates must consider frequency in order to provide accurate comparisons between different options.
  • Want Freedom? Love Grids.
    Properly designed (and geography permitting), a grid of frequent transit routes offers the most efficient transit mobility across its extent.
  • Want to be a transit planner?
    Some advice to people interested in entering the profession.
  • “Be on the way!”
    If you are a building a place that you want people to use transit to get to, it must be located somewhere that transit can serve efficiently.
  • “Transferring” Can Be Good!
    Making connections between two transit routes is often thought of simply as a hassle or inconvenience, but transfers are key to the true freedom of mobility a frequent transit network can provide.
  • The Problem of School Transportation.
    I can’t solve it, but I can explain why it’s hard.