William L. Ball

Document Type

Technical Report

Publication Date



Advanced Public Transportation Systems (APTS), Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS), Bus Transit


This report provides a description and discussion of Advanced Public Transportation Systems (APTS) technologies, and then focuses on methods for assessing the economic feasibility of implementing these technologies. Three evaluation techniques are presented, including a general assessment, an alternative investments analysis, and a breakeven analysis. First, a general assessment is presented which provides a breakdown of costs collected for seven APTS technologies, including automatic vehicle location (AVL), automatic passenger counters (APCs), advanced fare payment media, computerized telephone information systems, computerized dispatching/scheduling, passenger information displays (PIDs), and annunciators. This is followed by the identification and qualitative assessment of the potential benefits of these technologies. Second, an alternative investments analysis was developed and is designed to analyze the potential impacts of using proposed APTS funding for more traditional transit investments, such as an increase in the level of service, a reduction in the average fare, or an expansion of traditional marketing activities. Third, a breakeven analysis (developed by Morlok, et al. in 1991) is presented and updated using fiscal year 1992 national transit statistics to estimate the reduced number of buses and/or revenue miles necessary to break even on an investment in an Automatic Vehicle Location (AVL) system that includes advanced communications capability. In addition, the analysis is extended to estimate some of the external benefits that potentially could result from the implementation of an AVL system.

Citation / Publisher Attribution

Economic and Policy Considerations of Advanced Public Transportation Systems (Apts), Assessing the Economic Feasibility of Apts, Center for Urban Transportation Research, University of South Florida, 82 p.