Park-and-ride transit gives suburban commuters higher access to jobs | 11/9/2017 | Staff
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Park-and-ride facilities enable many suburban and exurban commuters in the Twin Cities metro area to reach roughly as many jobs as urban transit users, according to a first-of-its-kind study from the Accessibility Observatory at the University of Minnesota. The Observatory's new method, just published in Transportation Research Record, incorporates park-and-ride trips into transit accessibility evaluations.

"This analysis shows how park-and-ride investments translate to economic opportunity for suburban and exurban residents," said Kristin Carlson, a researcher with the Accessibility Observatory and author of the study. "Our new data can inform transit operators and the Minnesota Department of Transportation on facility placement, travel behavior and future investment."

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Researchers analyzed how modeling connections between automobile and public transit at park-and-ride facilities provides a more detailed view of the job accessibility available to Twin Cities commuters. Job accessibility is three times greater for those who can drive to park-and-ride facilities compared to those who walk to transit. Park-and-ride service makes transit accessibility levels in the suburbs more competitive with automobile levels during the morning commute.

By dedicating space to park personal vehicles, park-and-ride facilities expand the reach of transit service in otherwise low density regions, such as Brooklyn Park and Maplewood....
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