B-Line Market Based Transit Study

Cliff Chambers, Selena Barlow, and Hugh Clark were hired to conduct a robust public participation and market research effort in order to develop and analyze four alternatives for B-Line Fixed Route services: 1) 10% reduction in vehicle service hours 2) reallocation of existing vehicle service hours 3) 10% increase in vehicle service hours and 4) financially unconstrained market-based alternative to provide potential riders reasonable transit choices. Four open house workshops and stakeholder interviews were used to help craft survey instruments for an e-survey of Butte College CSUC students, faculty and staff, as well as a 400-person general public survey. The surveys employed trade-off analysis to determine market segment priorities. An existing conditions report was prepared on a route-by-route basis to define existing route productivity and schedule adherence by route segment and stop. A three-day design summit was held with BCAG staff, the mayor of Chico, BCAG Board president, the contractor and consulting staff utilizing the public participation and market research and existing conditions findings to formulate the four service alternatives described above.

The market research included an on-board survey done previously (and described below), a community telephone survey, and an e-survey of CSUC and Butte College students and faculty. The market research results were utilized in an extensive public participation process with eight workshops, the development of an existing conditions report, design and a service alternatives working paper.

A recommended plan was selected by the Project Development Team that reallocates existing vehicle service hours to better serve the core area of Chico with 20-minute service during peak periods and increases frequencies of fixed route service from every two hours to every hour in highly transit dependent Oroville. Regional services were re-routed to the Chico Mall to avoid unnecessary transfers. The selective reduction in services on unproductive routes and times enabled the service enhancements. Ed Pigman of Transit Resource Center developed the new timetables for service implementation on November 1, 2010.  This work was completed while Cliff Chambers was a Principal with Transit Resource Center.

2008 On-board Survey: Transit Marketing conducted a comprehensive on-board survey and passenger count for B-Line. Cliff Chambers assisted with the project and was in charge of the ridecheck.

Data collected was used to develop a detailed profile of B-Line riders on both local and regional services. In addition, the project provided route boarding profiles and raw origin/destination data which were an important tool for formulating alternatives in the market- based transit study described above.

Key Staff: Cliff Chambers, Ed Pigman, Selena Barlow, Hugh Clark, and Sean Hedgpeth

Project Budget: $180,000 (market-based transit study) $63,000 (on-board survey and ridecheck)

Executive Summary:
B-Line Market Based Transit Study Executive Summary 6-15-10

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