Yesterday Executive Constantine released The Strategic Plan for Public Transportation. Since his election, Constantine has shied way from the spotlight, focusing on making county government operate as well and efficiency as possible. The Regional Transit Task Force (RTTF) was a key element of this with relation to transit. In general the strategic plan shouldn’t be a major surprise. It lays out what should be expect from Metro as an agency, i.e. safe operations, access to service countywide, support economic growth, etc.
More interesting is the updated accompanying Service Guidelines, which outlines the process by which Metro plans service. Before this point service proposals to the RTTF didn’t had firmly defined performance thresholds, it was more about the general approach not the actual numbers. Specific performance thresholds are now proposed. Also Metro has carried forward the “screen process” for planning with several changes.
First Metro looks at land use and social equity. Next service is added back that surpasses certain cost recovery, load or connection threshold or requirements. The next step is the largest change. Peak service is then added over the previously defined all-day network with the requirement that it is more than 20% faster than all-day routes and riders per trip is 90% of a competing route. The document also outlines service design guidelines that are very similar to what the RTTF recommended.
This is all very promising and exciting.