The USDOT’s IDTO application bundle aims to integrate passenger connection protection, dynamic scheduling, dispatching, routing of transit vehicles, and dynamic ridesharing into a single system that benefits both travelers and operators. IDTO is composed of the following applications:
- Connection Protection (T-CONNECT) – This application enables coordination among public transportation providers and travelers to improve the probability of successful transit transfers.
- Dynamic Transit Operations (T-DISP) – This application links available transportation service resources with travelers through dynamic transit vehicle scheduling, dispatching, and routing capabilities.
- Dynamic Ridesharing (D-RIDE) – This application uses dynamic ridesharing technology, personal mobile devices, and voice activated on-board equipment to match riders and drivers.
A two-site prototype demonstration of T-CONNECT and T-DISP was conducted in Columbus, Ohio and Central Florida. (D-RIDE was not tested in practice at either site due to a partner agency withdrawing from the demonstrations).
- The Columbus, Ohio test site covered the areas surrounding the Ohio State University (OSU) main campus and the Defense Supply Center Columbus (DSCC). Central Ohio Transit Authority (COTA), OSU’s Campus Area Bus Service (CABS) and DSCC’s Capital Transportation all took part in the demonstration that occurred from May to December 2014.
- The Central Florida proof-of-concept prototype demonstration occurred on November 5th, 2014. The demonstration centered on the LYNX bus system that serves greater Orlando region, including the University of Central Florida (UCF). Two additional providers, the UCF campus shuttle system, and the SunRail commuter rail service, which is operated by Veolia Transportation also participated in the demonstration of T-CONNECT and T-DISP.
For the evaluation of the IDTO prototype, an analytical statistical tool, known as the Integrated Dynamic Transit Operations – Bundle Evaluation Tool (IDTO-BET) was developed that simulated the functions of IDTO utilizing data received from the participating transit agencies.
- The average travel time savings associated with a T-CONNECT request was projected to range from approximately 4 minutes (for connections to services with 15-minute headways) to approximately 11 minutes (for connections to services with 40-minute headways). Average travel time savings per successful (i.e., enacted) connection protection via T-CONNECT was between 13 and 39 minutes.
- The average monetized value of travel time savings per successful T-CONNECT transaction was projected to range between around $2.70 and $8.15.
- In the main T-CONNECT analytical scenario, IDTO-BET indicated that the use of T-CONNECT would stimulate an increase in transit demand ranging from around six percent (for users connecting to services with 15-minute headways) to around 15 percent (for users connecting to services with 40-minute headways).
- The scenarios evaluated for T-DISP indicated the potential for users to experience considerable reliability gains (an average of around 13 minutes per transaction, or a monetized value of $2.71 per transaction).
- In the T-DISP analytical scenario, IDTO-BET indicated that the use of T-DISP would stimulate an increase in transit demand of approximately 32 percent.