Jitney-lite: a low-cost strategy for informal flexible feeder service with minimal technology
Efforts to provide informal, low-cost, flexible feeder services have occurred in many parts of the world. However, these services are often inefficient because informal operators cannot afford technologies for matching users and operators and efficiently routing vehicles. Transit riders are also concerned with the prices of technologies. This study develops a low-cost strategy for collective flexible feeder service, called the Jitney-lite service, that requires minimal technology. Our Jitney-lite bus operations offer door-to-door service to patrons who egress from a trunk-line transit system and fixed-route feeder service to those accessing the trunk-line system. This research formulated analytical models for this strategy, and the other two strategies exist in developing countries: (i) fixed-route bus and (ii) stand-based motorcycle taxi services. The cost evaluation starts from a level of a single trunk-line transit station by choosing the most cost-effective mode, and these costs are combined together for representing an entire city. The Bangkok Metropolitan Region (BMR) is used as a case study. The cost comparisons indicate that users who travel from a trunk-line transit station gain much benefits from the proposed strategy. The comparisons also indicate that Jitney-lite service is the most cost-effective in suburbs where zone size is large and trip density is low. The Jitney-lite is more favorable where residents earn low-to-middle incomes and/or where the quality of walking infrastructure is underdeveloped.