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Improvement of departure time suitability for interregional rail timetables
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Civil and Architectural Engineering, Transport planning. (Järnvägsgruppen, JVG, The KTH Railway Group)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6309-2924
2020 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In order to respond to growing interregional rail traffic, rail capacity should be allocated better. To achieve this, one possibility is to optimise suitability of departure times for rail passengers in the timetabling process. The suitability of departure and arrival times refers to how well the timetable can diminish constraints on passengers that must adapt their activities to train schedules. However, current knowledge on this issue is limited. Indeed, only few studies have quantified how passengers valuate departure time suitability. These studies are also quite brief in their coverage of the influence of travellers’ profiles on these valuations. In addition, current methods comparing the socioeconomic consequences of different timetables are not applicable in all contexts, and most of them rely on strong simplifications. In summary, this thesis aims to answer the following research questions:

  1. What are the determinants for passenger valuations of departure time suitability?
  2. How to improve the welfare assessment of departure time shifts in interregional timetables?

In paper 1, I focus on the first research question. To this end, we present a new study in which we estimate new valuations of departure time suitability. To achieve this, we conducted a stated-preference survey on several Swedish rail lines. We present the design of the survey and its result in the paper. With this work, I aim to fulfil two objectives: first, to provide figures to improve inputs for travel demand forecast models and socioeconomic assessments. Second, to determine the influence of trip characteristics and traveller’s socioeconomic profile on their valuations.

In paper 2, I focus on the second research question. To this end, we present a method that enables calculating changes in welfare due to departure time shifts in any interregional timetable. In this method, we bridge schedule-based model forecasts with cost-benefit analysis framework. This enables a better approximation of consumer and producer surplus than in previous literature. In addition, we show the applicability and potential of our method on a case study covering a Swedish interregional line.

Abstract [sv]

För att svara mot den växande interregionala järnvägstrafiken bör järnvägskapaciteten fördelas bättre. För att uppnå detta kan man i tidtabellsprocessen optimera lämpligheten för tågpassagerares avgångstid. Lämpligheten för avgångs- och ankomsttider avser tidtabellens förmåga att minska passagerarnas begränsningar när de måste anpassa sin verksamhet efter tågplanen. Men det finns en brist i aktuella kunskaper i denna fråga. Faktum är att endast få studier har kvantifierat hur passagerare värderar lämplighet för avgångstid. Dessa studier är också ganska översiktliga i sin beskrivning av hur resenärers profiler påverkar värderingarna. Dessutom är de nuvarande metoderna som jämför de socioekonomiska konsekvenserna av olika tidtabeller inte tillämpliga i alla sammanhang, och de flesta av dem förlitar sig på starka förenklingar. Sammanfattningsvis har denna avhandling syftat på att svara följande forskningsfrågor: 

1. Vilka faktorer påverkar passagerares utvärdering av lämpligheten för avgångs- och ankomsttider?  

2. Hur kan man förbättra utvärderingen av skillnader i välfärd av varierande avgångstider för interregionala tåg?

I artikel 1 behandlar vi första forskningsfrågan. För detta ändamål presenterar vi en ny studie där vi analyserar nya värderingar av lämplighet för avgångstid. För att uppnå detta genomförde vi en stated-preference undersökning på tre svenska järnvägslinjer. Vi presenterar undersökningens utformning och dess resultat i uppsatsen. Med detta arbete syftar vi till att uppfylla två mål: för det första, att tillhandahålla siffror för att förbättra indata i prognosmodeller för reseefterfrågan och samhällsekonomiska bedömningar. För det andra, att bestämma påverkan av resans egenskaper och resenärers socioekonomiska profil på värderingarna.

I artikel 2 behandlar vi den andra forskningsfrågan. För detta ändamål presenterar vi en metod som gör det möjligt att beräkna förändringen i välfärd på grund av förskjutningar i avgångstiderna i en interregional tidtabell. I den här metoden överbryggar vi kunskapen i schemalagda modeller med kostnadsnyttoanalysramen. Detta möjliggör en bättre uppskattning av konsument- och producentöverskott än i tidigare litteratur. Dessutom visar vi användbarheten av vår metod i en fallstudie som täcker en svensk interregional linje.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2020. , p. 32
Series
TRITA-ABE-DLT ; 206
National Category
Transport Systems and Logistics Economics
Research subject
Transport Science, Transport Systems
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-272220ISBN: 978-91-7873-491-7 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-272220DiVA, id: diva2:1424873
Presentation
2020-05-15, Via Zoom - https://kth-se.zoom.us/j/947178382, Du som saknar dator/datorvana kan kontakta joffa@kth.se för information / Use the e-mail address if you need technical assistance, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Swedish Transport Administration
Note

QC 20200423

Available from: 2020-04-23 Created: 2020-04-20 Last updated: 2022-06-26Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Estimation of interregional rail passengers’ valuations for their desired departure times
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Estimation of interregional rail passengers’ valuations for their desired departure times
2020 (English)In: Transport Policy, ISSN 0967-070X, E-ISSN 1879-310XArticle in journal (Refereed) Submitted
Abstract [en]

Valuations for various attributes of the transport supply are key parameters in travel demand forecast models and cost-benefit analyses. In the case of interregional rail travel, such attributes are mostly travel time, departure/arrival time, and comfort/service levels. Although the valuations for travel time savings and comfort levels are well documented, literature concerning how much passengers are willing to pay to obtain the departure/arrival time that best suits their needs remains scarce. We present in this paper a new study that estimates passenger valuations for reduction of departure time displacement (also called schedule delay) through common adaptation of the scheduling model. Our goal is twofold: first, better understand how travel scheduling is influenced by socioeconomic backgrounds and trip characteristics; second, provide detailed figures that can be used to improve travel demand forecasts and cost-benefit analyses. To achieve this, we conducted a stated preference survey on several Swedish rail routes and determined the valuations for departure time scheduling as willingness to pay and time multipliers. The figures obtained show that departure time flexibility greatly depends on trip characteristics and travellers’ socio-economic background. In addition, the comparison of our figures with previous literature highlights the need to establish a standardised method to measure and use these valuations. Finally, we succeeded in providing valuations that can be used with care as approximations in demand modelling and cost-benefit analyses in the context of interregional rail travel.

Keywords
Willingness to pay; Interregional travel; Departure time choice; Scheduled delay; Stated preferences.
National Category
Economics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-272215 (URN)
Funder
Swedish Transport Administration
Note

QC 20200506

Available from: 2020-04-20 Created: 2020-04-20 Last updated: 2022-06-26Bibliographically approved
2. Improving interregional rail timetabling through welfare assessment of departure time shifts
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Improving interregional rail timetabling through welfare assessment of departure time shifts
2021 (English)In: Journal of Rail Transport Planning & Management, ISSN 2210-9706, E-ISSN 2210-9714, Vol. 17, no 100223Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In order to improve current rail timetabling processes, the suitability of train departure times for passengers should be included in timetable assessment. To achieve this, one possibility is to calculate the change in consumer and producer surplus (i.e., the economic welfare) resulting from departure time shifts in rail timetables. However, existing methods for this calculation are quite limited. To fill this gap, we propose a new method in the current paper. This method enables comparing most scenarios involved in interregional rail timetabling in terms of economic welfare. To this end, our method takes advantage of schedule-based models that allow assessing the impact of departure time shifts on the demand and valuation of each possible route using the timetable. As a proof of concept, we illustrate this method on a case study on the busiest Swedish interregional line. This case study shows the potential of the method to deliver detailed calculations with analysis of equity effects. To conclude, the method presented in this paper improves on the current literature, and it can be used to improve timetable optimisation algorithms or to better resolve conflicts between train path requests.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier BV, 2021
Keywords
Departure time choice; Timetable assessment; Schedule-based model; Consumer surplus; Producer surplus; Cost-benefit analysis.
National Category
Transport Systems and Logistics
Research subject
Transport Science, Transport Systems
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-272216 (URN)10.1016/j.jrtpm.2020.100233 (DOI)000630721100001 ()2-s2.0-85099146499 (Scopus ID)
Funder
Swedish Transport Administration
Note

QC 20210113

Available from: 2020-04-20 Created: 2020-04-20 Last updated: 2022-06-26Bibliographically approved

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