Delivery insights

Recommendations for a complete turnaround of a BRT system in terms of infrastructure, operations and passenger perception

Client Situation

Our client operates one of the busiest BRT systems in the world with almost one million daily trips. The BRT system runs along an exclusive corridor that traverses the city in an east to west direction with multiple stations along its length. During peak times, the headway of the system drops as low as to 15 seconds in order to accommodate the high commuter demand.

The BRT system operator always focuses on operations improvement and technology upgrades. At the same time, given that the system provides much needed connectivity along the east to west direction, its almost one million daily passengers are constantly demanding for better service levels. This is clearly captured in the related satisfaction surveys.

In this context, our client assigned to M-Prime a holistic review of the system targeting to highlight possible improvements.

The way to problem solving

Activating our team of experts in BRT design and operations, we implemented a solid approach that delivered results our client in a short timeframe:

  • Initially we analysed key data and information about the BRT system design, infrastructure, operations, performance and financials
  • We also performed on site visits to stations, the bus operations centre, the depot and the maintenance shops. Thanks to the support of the local team, we managed to get familiar with the entire spectrum of operations
  • We then compared the performance of the BRT system of our client with similar BRT systems around the world and defined the constraints that may impact on the service levels provided
  • Finally, we proposed a comprehensive plan of improvement initiatives for all aspects of BRT services planning, network design, infrastructure and operations.

As a result of the holistic system review, a medium to long term improvement plan was drafted. The plan included nine programmes further analysed to 37 initiatives spanning from client experience and service levels to fleet, stations, service plan and marketing and communications.

To enhance system capacity, we proposed improvements to route planning, replacement of the aging vehicles and various methods to enable express services in the exclusive BRT corridor.

To improve network performance, we suggested interventions related to bus priority lanes in the adjacent road network, improved integration with metro services and rebranding of feeder bus services to have a common look with the BRT system.

A series of improvements for BRT stations were also suggested in order to provide passenger experience at par with the services provided by the city’s metro systems. Station improvements included allocation of load zone space to specific services, platform expansion, accessibility enhancements, signage and wayfinding, real time passenger information and lighting.

Finally, it was proposed to implement a focused Travel Demand Management, marketing and communications programme to increase awareness about BRT operations and to improve passenger perceptions.