Transit Capacity and Quality of Service Manual, 3rd Edition

The Transit Capacity and Quality of Service Manual (TCQSM) was initially published in 1999. The TCQSM serves as a comprehensive resource document presenting information on principles and practices of transit capacity for all transit modes, and of transit quality of service from the passenger's point-of-view. The TCQSM supplements the Highway Capacity Manual, which focuses on presentation of highway capacity and quality of service principles and practices. A subset of the material in the TCQSM 1st Edition serves as the basis for the transit chapters in the Highway Capacity Manual 2000 (HCM2000). Subsequent to the publishing of the HCM2000, a 2nd Edition of the TCQSM was published in 2003. Whereas the 1st Edition was primarily a synthesis effort of previous transit capacity research, with the quality-of-service section being its primary new contribution, the 2nd Edition focused on filling gaps in previous research, updating capacity and quality-of-service procedures, and incorporating feedback from users of the 1st Edition. The 2nd Edition, published as TCRP Report 100, has subsequently become one of TCRP's best-selling documents. A 2010 edition of the Highway Capacity Manual is currently under development. The 2010 HCM will have a more multimodal focus than before, but given the existence of the TCQSM, the increasing page count of the HCM as a result of new research, and the difficulty of keeping the two manuals' content in sync with each other, the 2010 HCM will present a more streamlined presentation of transit. The HCM project's intent is to have a strong TCQSM continue to be the primary source for basic information on transit capacity and quality of service. Given a new HCM 2010, there is strong feeling that an update of the TCQSM, a 3rd Edition, is required to reflect refined highway and multimodal analysis procedures, and to incorporate the substantial research related to transit capacity and quality of service that has occurred since 2003. The TCQSM is a cornerstone of the TCRP report series. It is used by numerous universities as a basic transit education tool, was previously the subject of a National Transit Institute course, and was used by one large transit agency as an educational tool for their transit board in a series of workshops on transit quality of service, performance measurement, and service standards. An Internet search found numerous examples of usage of the TCQSM by transit agencies, metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs), and state DOTs. The manual's transit level-of-service (LOS) measures are the most commonly applied portion of the document, particularly in long-range transit plans and transit development plans, although they have also been applied to corridor studies, alternatives analyses, and environmental impact statements. The state of Florida developed a guidebook for transit agencies and MPOs on ways to apply the TCQSM's transit LOS measures. The manual's documented capacity applications have particularly focused on bus rapid transit (BRT) operations, although one example of a light rail application was also found, along with examples of the manual being used as a source of comparative modal capacities. In addition, the manual is often used as a source of transit definitions and transit capacity and quality of service concepts, even when the manual's specific procedures are not required or used for a particular application. The objective of this research is to develop a 3rd Edition of the TCQSM, to reflect the latest transit capacity and quality of service applications and research, the new multimodal focus and procedures in the 2010 Highway Capacity Manual, and interest in the international community to expand the manual to reflect transit conditions outside North America.


  • English


  • Status: Proposed
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project A-15C

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Federal Transit Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  USA  20590

    Transit Cooperative Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC    20001
  • Project Managers:

    Schwager, Dianne

  • Start Date: 20100930
  • Source Data: RiP Project 25242

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01461683
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project A-15C
  • Files: TRB, RiP, USDOT
  • Created Date: Jan 3 2013 1:50PM