Designing an autonomous service to cover transit last mile in low-density areas

Public transportation provides a safe, convenient, affordable, and eco-friendly mobility service. However, due to its fixed routes and limited network coverage, it is sometimes difficult or impossible for passengers to walk from a transit stop to their destination. This inaccessibility problem is also known as the “transit last mile connectivity problem”. Such a lack of connectivity forces travelers to drive and hence increase the vehicle ownership and Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) on roads. The autonomous mobility-on-demand (AMoD) service with characteristics such as quick fleet repositioning and demand responsiveness, has the potential to provide coverage in low-density areas where the fixed route transit can only provide limited coverage. The research team proposes to conduct research on designing an AMoD service to solve the transit last mile problem in low-density regions of the Greater Minnesota. The project will explore two different alternatives for providing the last-mile service, namely, traditional fixed-route circulator and online demand-responsive autonomous service. Furthermore, the team proposes to survey travelers in a focus area to estimate the induced (extra) demand for this new service. The work will employ techniques from state-of-the-art optimization and machine learning to optimize the system as a whole. By conducting this study, the project would pave a way for low-density Minnesota regions to adopt future mobility options.


    • English


    • Status: Active
    • Funding: $100000
    • Contract Numbers:

      1036342 WO#8

    • Sponsor Organizations:

      Local Road Research Board

      395 John Ireland Boulevard
      St. Paul, Minnesota  United States  55155-1899
    • Managing Organizations:

      Minnesota Department of Transportation

      395 John Ireland Boulevard
      St Paul, MN  United States  55155
    • Principal Investigators:

      Khani, Alireza

    • Start Date: 20210618
    • Expected Completion Date: 20231231
    • Actual Completion Date: 0

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01762321
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: Minnesota Department of Transportation
    • Contract Numbers: 1036342 WO#8
    • Files: RIP, STATEDOT
    • Created Date: Jan 15 2021 12:01PM