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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Automatic Generation of School Bus Routes in Los Angeles

  • Author(s): Porter, Mason A.;
  • Spencer, David J.;
  • Hung, Cu Hauw
  • et al.

The goal of our project is to automatically generate school bus routes for the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD). We examined four algorithms, including two from the existing literature and two new ones that we developed. A major focus of our work was the construction of “mixed-load routes,” which transport students from multiple schools. Based on our measurements (whose imperfections we discuss), three of the four algorithms perform at least as well as the existing route plan, and one of those three performs better than the existing route plan. We also delivered a user-friendly routing program to LAUSD that uses one of these algorithms, and we have made our software publicly available. Our insights and results are also applicable to other school districts that permit mixed-load routing.

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